Outlook for Russian fisheries in the North Atlantic in January 2008

January 16, 2008 16:02

In the first half of January 2008 in the Barents Sea the bulk of the fishing vessels will probably operate in the Russian waters, but by the end of the month a considerable part of the Russian trawlers, especially those equipped with modern trawl systems, will start fishing in the Norwegian EEZ. There, in the area of the Banks of Sere, Fuley, Malang and Andey, and later on more southern grounds off Vesteraalen and Lofoten, abundant concentrations of prespawning cod, haddock and saithe will be formed. According to provisional reports, already by the end of the first week of the year 2008 the fishermen discovered large amounts of saithe along the northern part of the Norwegian coast.

Russia's quotas 2008 in the Norwegian EEZ




Ocean perch Sebastes Marinus + ocean perch Sebastes Mentella


Inevitable bycatch of up to 15% per each particular haul

Blue whiting


Can be harvested in a limited area of the Norwegian EEZ and in the Yan-Mayen fishing zone beyond the 4-mile zone.

A bycatch of up to 10% of mackerel per each haul is allowed.



Up to 5000 tonnes for direct fishery, the remaining volume is allowed to be harvested as bycatch limited to 49% per each particular haul in cod and haddock fishery.

Bycatch in herring fishery to the north of the 62nd degree North is allowed at 5% per each particular haul.

Sea cat


For direct fishery and bycatch

Other fish species


Non-regulated species as bycatch in quota-regulated fisheries

The harvest of bottomfish species in January 2008 is forecasted to be at least twice bigger than in December 2007.


According to provisional reports from the shipowners, at least 10 crabbers will operate on the red king crab grounds in the Barents Sea thus making it possible to expect a total harvest of ca.2000 tonnes of crabs though the month.

Blue whiting

In the Norwegian Sea blue whiting will be the only species targeted by the Russian fleets in January 2008. The main fishing grounds will be located in the Faroese fishing zone. Subject to favourable weather conditions and larger fishing efforts Russia's harvest of blue whiting in January 2008 may total 17,000-18,000 tonnes. According to the results of the 31st session of the Mixed Russian-Faeroese Fisheries Commission which took place in Torshavn (Faroe Islands) on 26-27 November 2007, the sides have made the following decisions concerning quotas 2008:

  • The Faroe authorities have allowed the Russian fishermen to harvest 120,000 tonnes of blue whiting (including bycatch of herring and anchovy) and 8200 tonnes of mackerel in the Faroese fishing zone. At the same time, the largest bycatch allowed for the Russian fleets has been set at 3% for herring, 10% for anchovy out of the blue whiting quota. The largest possible bycatch of other species account for 2% of each particular haul. The Faroe side has agreed that up to 30,000 tonnes of the above mentioned blue whiting quota given to the Russian Federation for operations in the year 2008 can be harvested in the NEAFC zone according to the Recommendation approved by the NEAFC at the 26th session in November 2007.
  • The Faroe side has confirmed compulsory use of selective grids by the Russian vessels targeting blue whiting in the Faroese fishing zone. The sides have agreed that the Special Working Group of Fishing Gear Specialists will continue working in 2008 in order to consider the issues concerning the use of selective grids by the Russian and the Faroese fishing vessels.
  • In 2008 the Faroe authorities allow the Russian fishermen to harvest blue whiting and mackerel in the Faroese fishing zone, including the Special area between the fishing zones of the Faroe Islands and the UK. The Faroe authorities will issue permits for capture of blue whiting in the Faeroese fishing zone for 29 Russian vessels from 1 April 2008 to 31 April 2008 (of which maximum 16 vessels will be allowed to work one at a time in the area from 15 April to 31 May 2008), 20 Russian vessels from 1 January 2008 to 31 March 2008 and 28 vessels from November 2008 to 31 December 2008. Subject to petition of the Russian side, the Faroe authorities will consider the possibility to allow a certain number of the Russian vessels to conduct dedicated fishery of the agreed volume of Atlanto-Scandian herring in the Faroese fishing zone out of the quota given to the Russian Federation according to the Agreed Protocol of consultations of the coastal countries on measures of regulation of the Norwegian spring-spawning (Atlanto-Scandian) herring.
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