Netherlands could face EU procedure over pulse fishing

EU flags in front of the European Commission
EU flags in front of the European Commission . (Photo: sashk0/DepositPhotos)

Officials from the European Commission want to launch an infringement procedure against the Netherlands for violating rules on pulse fishing, the Commission wrote in a letter to French environmental organization Bloom, which is in the possession of broadcaster NOS.

The European Commissioners still have to agree to this procedure. But according to NOS, it is rare for Commissioners to refuse a procedure. If the procedure is launched, it could result in the Netherlands having to adjust its policy, which can have major consequences for Dutch pulse fishermen. 

Bloom filed a complaint with the European Commission last year. According to the environmental organization, many Dutch pulse fishing licenses were illegally issued. Pulse fishing involves using electric pulses to catch flatfish. 

Last year the European Parliament voted to ban pulse fishing. Over the past months the Netherlands has been in talks on a European level to try and prevent this. An infringement procedure would make these discussions a lot more difficult.