The EU shark finning ban at the beginning of the new millennium

paper3Published online on 29. December 2013

The EU shark finning ban at the beginning of the new millennium:
the legal framework

Annamaria Passantino


The strong international market for shark fins, but the often relatively low value of shark meat and the practical constraints for preserving it on board, has led to the practice whereby fins are removed from any shark caught by a fishing vessel and retained on board while the remainder of the shark is discarded at sea. This practice, known as “shark finning”, has raised increasing concerns, at both the international and European level, due to the killing of large quantities of sharks, with devastating and unsustainable effects on shark populations. Despite the importance of shark fisheries for EC fleets, to date shark fisheries are not subject to a comprehensive management framework at the European level. A number of measures aiming directly or indirectly at the conservation and management of sharks have been adopted over time. Considering that, the range of existing measures must be strengthened to ensure the rebuilding of many depleted stocks fished by the EU fleet both in and outside EU waters. At the EC level a new regulation has recently been implemented. The paper carries out an overview of the legal framework for the finning bans in the EU to improve current knowledge about this topic and to aid in focusing future research.

ICES Journal of Marine Science, doi.10.1093/icesjms/fst190


Leave a Reply