General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean - GFCM

Recreational fisheries

Recreational fisheries are defined as “a non-commercial fishing activity exploiting marine living resources for recreation, tourism or sport”. They play an integral part in Mediterranean and Black Sea coastal life and they represent a significant economic component of coastal tourism, one of the main maritime sectors in terms of gross value added and employment.

However, proper consideration of recreational fisheries in policy-making has, to date, been held back by a lack of regular and reliable catch, effort and socio-economic data. Given that recreational fisheries represent an additional component of fishing mortality, there is a need to improve knowledge on the sector and include its catches in stock assessments in order to support the sustainable management of fish stocks.


  • Implementation of harmonized sampling and survey monitoring schemes for recreational fisheries in pilot case studies, in line with FAO’s Handbook for recreational fisheries data collection in the Mediterranean and Black Sea.
  • Identification of main species of interest to recreational fisheries, by GFCM subregion.
  • Study of the interactions between small-scale fisheries and recreational fisheries (including both conflicts and synergies).