The European Commission said cod stocks in the Kattegat, between Denmark and Sweden, in the Irish Sea, and west of Scotland "are no showing no signs of recovery."Whereas, if Norway were in the EU they would simply have to obey the rules as they will be passed at the Fisheries Ministers' meeting in December. But, of course, there is no difference between our position in the EU and Norway's outside it, as we are told ad nauseam by various europhiliacs.
"The Commission is therefore proposing 50 percent reductions in these total allowable catches," a statement said.
North Sea cod took a hit in 2008 when a greater proportion of the stock was caught than in any year since 1999, while closures and cod-avoidance schemes had failed to protect it and had had little effect on fishing patterns, it said.
As management of cod in the area is co-managed with Norway, the EU hopes to have talks with Oslo on redressing the situation.
So it is not altogether surprising that only 24 per cent of those asked support EU membership for Norway. No matter who conducts the poll, there has been a strong majority against EU membership in Norway since 2005. I don't think they will be applying any time soon.
Meanwhile, across the sea in Iceland, the polls continue to tell the same tale. 60 per cent against, 26 per cent in favour and the rest undecided. Even if all the undecided suddenly decided to be in favour (an unlikely scenario), those against would still outnumber them.