Skip to main content
Oceans and fisheries

Illegal fishing

Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU) depletes fish stocks, destroys marine habitats, distorts competition, puts honest fishers at disadvantage, and weakens coastal communities, particularly in developing countries.

EU rules to combat IUU fishing

The EU is working to close the loopholes that allow operators to profit from IUU fishing activities.

The EU regulation to prevent, deter and eliminate illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (in short: the IUU Regulation) entered into force on 1 January 2010.

The Commission is working actively with all stakeholders to ensure coherent application of the IUU Regulation.

Only marine fishery products accompanied by catch certificates validated by the competent flag state can be imported into the EU.

The EU regularly updates the IUU vessel list. It includes IUU vessels identified by regional fisheries management organisations.

The IUU Regulation can take steps against states turning a blind eye to illegal fishing activities: the Commission first issues a warning (yellow card), then if the country is still not complying, it will identify the country as non-cooperating. (the so-called red card) and place it in the list of non-cooperating countries. Fisheries products from the country in question will then be banned from the EU market (see the fact sheet below).

The IUU Regulation also applies to EU operators operating anywhere in the world and under any flag.

CATCH is the first IT tool to streamline checks and verifications of catch certificates for fishery products entering the EU market.

News

Read our latest news on illegal fishing.

Documents

IUU Regulation

IUU main implementing regulation

EU IUU vessel list

Overview of IUU procedures
English
(234.76 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
International cooperation in the fight against IUU fishing
English
(16.16 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
Summary of the main provisions of the IUU Regulation including detailed description of the catch certification scheme and notification process
English
(131.76 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
Frequently asked questions on the practical application of Council Regulation (EC) No. 1005/2008 of 29 September 2008 establishing a Community system to prevent, deter and eliminate illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (“IUU Regulation”)
English
(851.24 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
Frequently asked questions on the practical application of the UK IUU Regulation
English
(355.28 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner

 

Notifications

Flag State notification

List of third countries requesting a catch certificate (Article 15)
English
(68.02 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
List of designated ports in the EU
English
(489.85 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
List of competent authorities in EU countries
English
(523.83 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner

Additional information

Approved economic operators
English
(8.71 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
Pacific salmon and other anadromous species
English
(12.11 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
Requirements for catches stemming from the Caspian Sea
English
(7.99 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
CATCH information note
English
(125.63 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner
IUU implementation privacy statement
English
(199.41 KB - PDF)
Ladda ner

Publications

Faktablad8 juni 2021
Tackling illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing
Tackling illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing
English
(1.4 MB - PDF)
Ladda ner