The Azores Fisheries Federation
MEETING NO. : XVIII
The fisheries sector of the Autonomous Region of the Azores is a strategic pillar for the Region because it contributes to its export capacity and to its food self-sufficiency, generating business which encompasses about seven hundred and fifty companies, which generate wealth and provide the income for more than four thousand families, with a significant social impact, promoting the development of our coastal zones.
In the Azores, more than 90% of the fish unloaded for auction is the product of small-scale fishing, which respects natural values and the preservation of resources. The marine strategy regarding the exploitation of fisheries integrates the fundamental ideas of sustainable development, protection of the marine environment and rational and responsible fishing.
It is therefore imperative that the Region should strive to make the protection of the Exclusive Economic Zone a regional objective, in the pursuit of sustainable fishing for future generations.
The fisheries sector currently contributes with more than 20% of the total exports of the Autonomous Region of the Azores, and is the activity which has the greatest impact on marine resources and guarantees the territorial cohesion of dozens of small communities spread over the nine islands of the Azores.
The increase in the demand for natural sea products, which is the case of fish, will continue to give economic value to the Azores fishing fleet, which, neverthless, will have to diversify its activity in order to capture other species which have not yet been exploited. Thus it will be possible to take advantage of the full potential of the Exclusive Economic Zone.
The Azores Fisheries Federation is an association that unites all of the Associations representing the fisheries sector of the Autonomous region of the Azores.
This is why, in order to promote genuinely Azorean products, the Quebec Casa dos Açores [the Azores Cultural Centre in Quebec] has attributed the honourable mention “Quality Azorean Product” to the Fish of the Azores.