Olhãopesca against classifying the Pedra do Valado Area as a Marine Natural Park

Olhãopesca argues that this classification «will cause serious socio-economic problems in the commercial fishing sector in the region»

Olhãopesca is against the classification of Pedra do Valado area in Recife in the Algarve, as Marine Natural Park.

In a note sent to the newsrooms, Olhãopesca argues that this classification «raises questions of a constitutional nature, due to the fact that it discriminates between local fishing and coastal fishing in favor of the former» and that «it will cause serious socioeconomic problems in the fishing sector in the region, as well as throughout the related value chain».

That Organization of Fisheries Producers also points out the absence of an opinion by the «national reference laboratory», in this specific case, the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere, «in order to assess the effective state of the region’s marine resources and of the surrounding area», a comprehensive socio-economic impact study, as well as the provision of effective compensatory measures to the fishing communities involved».

Olhãopesca is a limited liability cooperative inserted in the professional fishing sector, headquartered in Olhão, which operates in the ports of Quarteira, Faro, Olhão, Fuseta, Tavira and Vila Real de Santo António.

Currently, it registers 179 fishing vessels, of which around 35 are in the fishing port of Quarteira and work regularly in the fishing area of ​​“Pedra do Valado”.

In its note, Olhãopesca reinforces that «the “Pedra do Valado” is an important fishing ground, of ancestral character, used by numerous coastal fishing vessels and places in the Algarve for generations».

«The regulatory fishing measures in force, issued by the Portuguese State and by the Common Fisheries Policy of the European Union, as well as the monitoring of the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere, have managed to maintain the necessary balance in order to conserve the natural richness of that fishing area and the sustainability of the fishing activities that have been carried out there for hundreds of years», defends the Producers Organization.

With regard to the vessels adhering to Olhãopesca, which work in that area, it is a universe of 35 fishing units, (7 fishing with seines/ trawlers and 28 fishing with traps), which generate a volume of annual turnover of 3,9 million euros, employing 168 fishermen.