Estonia, Russia agree on 2023 Lake Peipus fishing quotas

Smolnitsa Beach along the northern shore of Lake Peipus.
Smolnitsa Beach along the northern shore of Lake Peipus. Source: Rene Kundla/ERR

Estonia and Russia reached an agreement on fishing quotas for the transboundary Lake Peipus, Lake Lämmijärv and Lake Pskov for next year. Vendace quotas were significantly reduced for 2023, however pikeperch and perch totals will be increasing somewhat.

Agreements regarding next year's fishing quotas were reached following a couple of days of negotiations within the Estonian-Russian Fisheries Commission, which this year were conducted online.

Margus Salundi, chief specialist at the Ministry of the Environment's Fisheries Department, said that the quota for vendace (rääbis) was significantly reduced.

"While this year it was 45 tons, next year it'll be just 10 tons," he said. "There weren't any major fluctuations in other stocks."

No other major changes were made. Smelt (tint) fishing remains banned, while next year's pikeperch (koha) quota was raised by 25 tons to 470 tons and perch (ahven) quota by 55 tons to 895 tons. Next year's bream (latikas) fishing quota was set at 735 tons.

"We shouldn't be worried," the ministry fisheries official said. "Bream fishing was actually banned altogether for many, many years. This lake actually has a fantastic regenerative capacity. These stocks will surely increase as well. These fluctuations are entirely normal."

Perhaps more extraordinary than the achieved quota agreements this year were the negotiations themselves. The last two years, talks were held online due to the COVID-19 pandemic; this year's negotiations were likewise held online, but in significantly abridged form.

"Of course it's emotionally difficult to conduct negotiations with the Russians," Salundi acknowledged. "You could feel on their end that they didn't feel very comfortable at the table. We didn't bring up any general policy issues. We had informed them ahead of time that because Russia had launched military aggression against Ukraine, we only want to discuss those issues that are in the interests of fish stocks in Lake Peipus; we weren't willing to discuss any further matters."

This year marked the 48th meeting of the Estonian-Russian Fisheries Commission.


Follow ERR News on Facebook and Twitter and never miss an update!

Editor: Aili Vahtla

Hea lugeja, näeme et kasutate vanemat brauseri versiooni või vähelevinud brauserit.

Parema ja terviklikuma kasutajakogemuse tagamiseks soovitame alla laadida uusim versioon mõnest meie toetatud brauserist: