Added: 10. February 2009

Last update: 02. October 2018



The Estonian fisheries sector is divided into three larger areas: fishing, fish farming and processing, marketing. Fish are caught from the Baltic Sea (trawling and coastal fishing), from the northern section of the Atlantic Ocean (long-distance fishing), and from inland water bodies. The smaller by volume, but more valuable share is formed by the fish from the inland water bodies, mainly from Lake Peipus. The main directions of aquaculture include table fish farming, fish farming for population of natural waters, and lobster farming. The principal areas of activity in the field of fish processing in Estonia include freezing, filleting of fish, production of canned fish and ready-made fish products.

The main raw material used by the Estonian fish processing industry consists from fish species from the Baltic Sea, such as Baltic herring and Baltic sprat, and, in the case of filleting companies, fresh-water fish, such as bass and pike perch.

In 2007-2013, the Estonian fisheries sector was supported by almost 112.8 million euros from the funds of the European Fisheries Fund. For implementation of the common fisheries policy of the EU, 129.6 million euros will be invested into the development of Estonian fishery and coastal areas from the funds of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) in the period of 2014–2020. The support measures will offer opportunities for various investments, not just for the fishermen, aquaculture companies, and fish processors for modernization of their production, but also for research and development institutions for promotion of fishery- and aquaculture-related innovations. Measures have also been implemented or are in the course of implementation for protection and restoration of the biological diversity and ecosystems of the marine environment and for improvement of marine environment-related knowledge, for improvement of the energy efficiency and catching equipment of coastal fishing vessels and trawlers, for implementation of production and marketing plans.

In the case of several measures, support is applied for based on a plan approved by the Ministry of Rural Affairs in advance. Organizing of fishery-related trainings and apprenticeships is also supported at the national level.

The duties of the agency of the EMFF 2014-2020 implementation plan, and the certification and auditing agency are fulfilled by the Ministry of Rural Affairs in Estonia. The ARIB is fulfilling the duties of an intermediary body in implementation of the measures of the EMFF, incl. organizing of receipt and processing of applications for support, payment of subsidies, and monitoring of targeted use of the subsidies.


More detailed information regarding support measures is available here (in Estonian)
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