Quota and term overview

TAC and the Quota system

A TAC (Total Allowable Catches) is the biggest allowed catch volume for one species of fish in one or more given sea areas. When a TAC is established, it can be distributed as quotas to the associated fishing nations. A quota is a nation's maximum allowed catch volume of one species in a bounded sea area. In some cases, a quota can have more species in it, e.g. Dab and Flounder in the North Sea, as can the sea area be defined differently. One stock of fish will always refer to one or more certain species of fish within a bounded sea area.
There is a certain flexibility in the quota system. As such, a violation of allowed landings in quoted species can be tolerated by up to 5 %. However, such violations effect next years quota on the mentioned specie negatively. It is possible to request the Commision for a permit of landing excess amounts of a stock under a preventive TAC, though at most, 10%.
The excess amount will cause a reduction in next years quota.
The Commision can, for stocks restricted to analytical TAC's, authorise to withhold at the most 10% of the quota, and transfer this amount to the following year. It is also possible for each of the countries in the EU to mutually exchange quotas.
An EU-amount is a quota which is an undistributed and available amount to selected membership-countries. It is possible to have both a national quota and an undistributed quota. In later years most quotas have been distributed, meaning that only a few undistributed quotas are available to member countries of the EU.

Read more about TACs and quotas and find the underlying regulations here:

Europa Commission home page on total allowable catches (TACs) and quotas

Area codes

The first field in the quota-tables is an area code. The next field shows the underlying areas and economical zone (from 1996-2002, the economical zone is blank, if it was EEC). From 1996-2002, the area codes were as shown in the list below. Since 2003, the area codes are as those the member-countries are meant to use in their monthly announcement to the European Commision regarding landings of qouted species, see the always applying TAC (Total Allowable Catches). These are available in the links under 'Area charts' below.

Area charts with ICES-codes

The areas are coded in the same way as the international codes for ICES-areas. Below, the terms for each code are clarified:

1+2 - Norwegian Sea (Atlanto Scandic Herring)
1+2B - Svalbard
12 - North of the Azores
14+5 - Greenlandic waters, east
14 - Eastgreenlandic waters
2A - Norwegian Sea
2B - Svalbard and Bear Island
3+4 - Skagerrak/Kattegat/The Baltic Sea/The North Sea
3A+4 - The North Sea/Skagerrak/Kattegat
3A - Skagerrak/Kattegat
3A-D - Skagerrak/Kattegat/The Baltic Sea
3AN - Skagerrak
3AS - Kattegat
3B - Øresund
3C - The Belt Sea and the Western Baltic
3D - Eastern Baltic
22/24 - Western Baltic
25/32 - Eastern Baltic
4A - Northern North Sea
4AB - The North Sea
4AC - The North Sea
4B - Central North Sea
4C - Southern North Sea
4C7D - Southern North Sea (incl. The English Channel)
5B-8 - West of the British Isles
5B - Faroese waters
5B. - Faroese waters
6A - The waters west of Scotland
6B - Rockall
7 - West of the British Isles
7BC - The waters west of Ireland
7D - Eastern English Channel
7DE - The English Channel
7E - Western English Channel
7GK - The waters south of Irland
8A - Northern Biscayen
8D - Central Biscayen
8ABD - Biscayen
NAFO - NAFO area, remote waters
SØ - Lakes and the lakes

Economic zones

A zone is a nations economic zone, which is a sea area stretching up to 200 leagues from the nations shores or following international border-agreements. Several of the area codes are followed by a code designating the zone. Where there are no zone designation, the sea area is in European zone (EU-area/EEC). The code for economic zone is a three letter code. Next is a list of codes and interpretations:

EEC EU waters
CAN Canadian zone/area
EST Estonian zone/area
FRO Faroe zone/area
GRL Greenlandic zone/area
INT International zone/area
LTU Lithuania zone/area
LVA Latvian zone/area
NOR Norwegian zone/area
POL Polish zone/area
RUS Russian zone/area

Species codes in the Quota 'Other Norwegian zone species'

The Quota table 'Other Norwegian zone species' contains FAO code abbreviations for the species who are quota-designated and caught in the Norwegian zone under the quota 'Other Norwegian zone species'.

The full list of abbreviations, common and scientific names can be downloaded from FAOs homepage:

ASFIS List of Species for Fishery Statistics Purposes 

Fix point and fix date

The fix point is an administrative definition. The fix point makes up a percentage of the entire quota, and when this percentage has been used up, a decision is made on whether or not to introduce a regulation.