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Oceans and fisheries
News announcement4 November 2022Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries3 min read

European Maritime, Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund 2021-2027: the Commission adopts €518 million programme for Italy

Italy and European Union flags ©PX Media/Adobe Stock

Following the adoption of the Partnership Agreement 2021-2027 with Italy, the Commission has adopted the European Maritime, Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund (EMFAF) Programme for Italy, to implement the EU common fisheries policy (CFP) and EU policy priorities outlined in the European Green Deal. The total financial allocation for the Italian programme 2021-2027 is €987.2 million over the next six years, of which the EU contribution accounts for €518.2 million.

Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries, Virginijus Sinkevičius, said:

I am delighted to announce the adoption of the EMFAF programme for Italy which will support sustainable investments in aquaculture and fisheries and accelerate the green and digital transition of the sector. The programme will support the protection and restoration of aquatic biodiversity and ecosystems. It will also promote sustainable aquaculture and processing activities as well as stronger fisheries, aquaculture and processing sectors in Italy.

Supported activities

49,8% of the programme’s allocation will be dedicated to sustainable fisheries, 32,8% will be invested in sustainable aquaculture and in processing and marketing, 10% will be dedicated to sustainable blue economy in coastal, island and internal regions and 1,4% will be invested in the strengthening of international ocean governance, all contributing to the EU’s environmental and climate objectives.

The programme will support, among others things:

  • Sustainable fisheries: investments to comply with the landing obligation (as certain catches of fish are not allowed to be discarded at sea); conservation policies; reduction of the over-capacity of certain fleet segments; fisheries control and data collection; investments in fishing vessels to improve safety, health, hygiene, working conditions; energy efficiency and decarbonisation in fisheries.
  • Sustainable aquaculture: investments in sustainable aquaculture projects and for the diversification of farmed aquaculture species; energy efficiency and decarbonisation in aquaculture and the processing of the fish products.
  • Sustainable blue economy (i.e. economic activities related to seas and oceans): development of coastal and island areas through Local Action Groups (LAG).
  • International ocean governance: marine knowledge, maritime surveillance and coast guard cooperation.
EMFAF programme pie chart for Italy

Main expected outcomes until 2027

The Italian EMFAF programme will contribute to the EU policy priorities outlined in the European Green Deal, Farm to Fork and Biodiversity strategies.

The programme will support the resilience of the fisheries and aquaculture sectors, including through financial contribution to diversify the production or by using compensation schemes to support the relevant blue economy sectors from future crisis.

It will support the green transition of the sector with investments aimed at improving gear selectivity, decarbonisation and energy efficiency and engine replacement.

The digital transition of the Italian fisheries, aquaculture and processing sectors is a key area of the programme: it includes a wide range of innovative solutions from means of control and collection of fisheries data to new IT technologies applied to aquaculture production. 

The financial support will also help to develop and establish marine protected areas and to fight against marine litter. The programme will reinforce the environmental actions undertaken under the Italian prioritised action framework for Natura 2000: monitoring of marine and maritime habitats and species and promotion of scientific knowledge, in line with the EU’s Birds and Habitats Directives.

The EMFAF programme benefits from a good collaboration between the European Commission, national managing authorities and local partners. It will support Community-led local development strategies (CLLDs), a bottom-up approach to policy development that encourages local people to form a Local Action Group (LAG) and get involved.


The EMFAF runs from 2021 to 2027 and supports the EU common fisheries policy (CFP), the EU maritime policy and the EU agenda for international ocean governance. The fund helps achieve sustainable fisheries and conserve marine biological resources.

Article 8 of the EMFAF Regulation (EU) 2021/1139 requires Member States to produce a national implementation programme for the EMFAF. This operational programme focuses on EU priorities, laying down the strategy and investment priorities, including the indicative annual financial allocation for each priority. The programme is subject to approval by the European Commission.

More information

EMFAF programmes 2021 – 2027

Common fisheries policy (CFP)

Regulation (EU) 2021/1060 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 June 2021 laying down common provisions on the European Regional Development Fund, the European Social Fund Plus, the Cohesion Fund, the Just Transition Fund and the European Maritime, Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund and financial rules for those and for the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund, the Internal Security Fund and the Instrument for Financial Support for Border Management and Visa Policy

Aquaculture guidelines




Publication date
4 November 2022
Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries