General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean - GFCM

Successful implementation of the BlackSea4Fish project boosts WGBS

The GFCM Working Group on the Black Sea (WGBS) held its eighth meeting in Trabzon, Turkey, from 18 to 20 September 2019 and was attended by 28 delegates and experts from all Black Sea riparian countries as well as the European Union, ACCOBAMS and the GFCM Secretariat.


Trabzon | The WGBS reviewed the work carried out during the 2018-2019 intersession and discussed in particular aspects related to: 

  • Data collection and data quality  
  • The implementation of the Regional plan of action for small-scale fisheries in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea 
  • The future approach for the provision of advice 
  • The advice on the status of Black Sea stocks 
  • The interactions between fisheries and the environment and ecosystems 

Moreover, the WGBS reviewed the progress of the BlackSea4Fish project and all participants expressed their satisfaction for the achievements of the project during the intersession.  They especially highlighted the leap ahead in the quality of the preparatory work done in support of the provision of advice on priority species, covering a range of activities including data preparation and training in support of benchmark assessments. 

The WGBS formulated advice and priorities aimed at steering future work towards sustainable fisheries and agreed on its work plan for 2019–2021, focusing on: 

  • Stock assessment and strengthened advice 
  • Data collection and quality indicators 
  • Sustainable small-scale and recreational fisheries, including priority actions for the implementation of the RPOA-SSF 
  • Interactions between fisheries and vulnerable species, with a specific focus on mitigation measures for bycatch of marine mammals  

The Working Group ended with the election of its Bureau: Galin Nikolov (Bulgaria), as Coordinator, Ilhan Aydin (Turkey) as 1st Vice-Coordinator and George Tiganov (Romania) as 2nd Vice-Coordinator.


Note :  What is the GFCM Working Group on the Black Sea? 

The WGBS takes place every year and ensures the participation of all Black Sea riparian countries in discussions related to fisheries management, by examining relevant technical issues in the Black Sea and facilitating the flow of scientific data.