provided. Following the model of the Baltic fishing opportunities regulation, it will make the process for adoption more manageable and will provide operators with earlier certaintyregarding their activities for the next year.
Situation of the stocks
The Commission has, for six years now, published a Communication that reviews the state of the situation to which the fishing opportunities proposals must respond. This year, theCommunication from the Commission on the Consultation on Fishing Opportunities, notessome good news, as the state of some stocks has improved. However, many fish stocksremain subject to an advice to reduce catches to zero or to the lowest possible level. Manystocks are outside safe biological limits. Despite conservation measures imposed under theCFP, too many stocks are in these vulnerable categories and far too few stocks haveimproved. The analysis confirms that we need reinforced conservation measures for overexploited fish stocks.For 2011, the advice from the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) andthe Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF) once moreunderlines the poor state of many fish resources in Union waters. But it notes improvementsin certain important stocks, such as Celtic Sea cod, haddock, and the southern anglerfishstock. In response to the Commission's request, ICES is providing advice on a strategy toreach management consistent with Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY) in 2015. This issomething the Union committed to do when it subscribed to the conclusions of the 2002World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg and its related Plan of Implementation.The proposed fishing opportunities regulation respond to the scientific advice received by theCommission as to the state of the stocks, on the basis of which catch limits compliant withmulti-annual management plans are determined. For stocks not covered by such plans, the proposed TACs respond to the scientific advice in the manner outlined in CommunicationCOM(2011)298 final.Scientific advice is essentially dependent on data. Only stocks for which there is sufficientand reliable data can be assessed, so that size estimates are produced, as well as forecast of how they will react to the various exploitation scenarios (this is referred to as "catch optionstables"). Such situation exists only for a number of regulated stocks. For the remainder, theapproach to follow in management must still be the precautionary principle. In addition, it iscrucial to work decisively towards overcoming the data deficiencies affecting these stocks. Tothis end, the proposed measures must be rigorous.
Consistency with other policies and objectives of the Union
The measures proposed are designed in accordance with the objectives and the rules of theCommon Fisheries Policy and are consistent with the Union's policy on sustainabledevelopment.