EU Fisheries Policy Officer

Application deadline: 
Sunday, 8. April 2018 - 23:45


BirdLife Europe and Central Asia in Brussels is looking for:


EU Fisheries Policy Officer



BirdLife Europe and Central Asia (ECA) is looking for a dynamic, passionate and committed policy professional with experience in EU fisheries policy, in particular the external dimension of the Common Fisheries Policy, and industrial fisheries practices to support the work of BirdLife to minimize the impact of the EU distant water fleet fisheries on the marine environment, in particular the bycatch of seabirds, marine mammals and sea turtles, especially in West Africa and the Mediterranean.  



BirdLife ECA is a Partnership of 48 national conservation organisations and a leader in bird conservation. Our unique local to global approach enables us to deliver high impact and long term conservation for the benefit of nature and people.

BirdLife ECA is one of the six regional Secretariats of BirdLife International, the global authority on the status of bird species present in 120 countries worldwide. Based in Brussels, it supports the European and Central Asian Partnership and is present in 47 countries including all EU Member States.

With more than 4.100 staff in Europe, 2 million members and tens of thousands of skilled volunteers, BirdLife Europe and Central Asia, together with its national Partners, owns or manages more than 6,000 nature sites totalling 320 000 hectares.



In 2013, the EU adopted the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), which lays down the EU’s external policy on fisheries. It specifically states that EU vessels fishing outside the EU are to apply the same principles and standards as those applicable within the EU, as well as improve policy coherence of EU initiatives with particular regard to environmental, trade and development activities. Under EU law, there is strict adherence to nature protection, in particular for species and habitats listed under the Birds Directives and the Habitats Directive. Therefore it is illegal for EU vessels to catch sensitive species bycaught in West Africa and Mediterranean that are protected under EU legislation. Furthermore, the CFP’s external policy is also explicit in stating that EU vessels need to comply with international agreements, including rules laid down under Regional Fishing Management Organisations (RFMOs).

The EU Fishery Policy Officer, as part of BirdLife Europe’s policy team will help decrease the impact of EU vessels fishing outside EU waters on seabird in particular in West Africa and the Mediterranean.  



  1. To keep abreast of EU legislative and policy developments primarily related to the impact of EU vessels fishing outside EU waters in particular in West Africa and the Mediterranean.
  2. To assist in developing constructive working relationships with key influential bodies, especially the European Commission and the European Parliament, as well as relevant NGOs and stakeholders, and to win their support for our priorities, positions and programmes individually and collectively.
  3. To engage in the implementation of EU regulations that have an impact on the EU fishing vessels in West Africa, in particular the Fishing Authorisation Regulation and the Data Collection Regulation.
  4. To help build BirdLife policy positions and messages based on evidence gathered on EU agreements and on EU spending in West Africa.
  5. To promote the uptake of nature protection in EU bilateral negotiations with other countries in particular through:
    1. Being the main Brussels based BirdLife advocate on the external dimension of the Common Fisheries Policy.
    2. To help generating, formulating, adopting and advocating to EU level decision makers BirdLife positions related to Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreements, the Fisheries Control Regulation, EU financing to third countries, Data Collection Regulation and Fishing Authorisation Regulation.
    3. Providing policy support to BirdLife Secretariat and Partners in Africa, regarding the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreements (e.g. through briefs and papers, and through phone and e-mail communication as well as visits).
    4. Help BirdLife Secretariat and Partners outside the EU to build close relationships with governments and EU delegations in particular in West Africa, Morocco, Tunisia and Turkey.
    5. Providing technical support to the Marine Task Force (organisation of meetings, taking minutes, maintaining Task Force archive, relevant web-pages etc.)
  6. To help build relationships with other NGOs working in West Africa and the Mediterranean on related issues as well as with the EU fishing industry and local fishers.
  7. To represent BirdLife Europe at technical EU committees and working groups in relation with areas described in Overall Purpose of Job.
  8. To co-operate with all BirdLife Europe staff, in particular with the Head of EU Policy, the other members of the EU Policy Team and the Regional Director, as well as with the Marine Coordinator and the members of the Marine Task Force and to fully involve them in relevant discussions to facilitate and promote BirdLife’s positions;
  9. To help provide detailed briefs and papers for decision-makers, along with the other staff in the office. To provide detailed briefs and updates on relevant policy areas for the Partners (particularly for the Birds and Habitats Directives Task Force).
  10. To help identify opportunities for funding, in collaboration with specialist fundraisers, (other) European Division staff and Partners. Contribute to reporting to donors as necessary.
  11. To contribute to the communications efforts of BirdLife Europe (publications, newsletter, social media).
  12. To represent the BirdLife Europe at external meetings and conferences as necessary.
  13. To contribute as appropriate to the work and general policy of BirdLife Europe and the European BirdLife Partnership.
  14. To respond to inquiries as necessary from within and outside the Partnership.



Duration: 1 year (renewable) Belgian contract

Working hours: full-time



Please submit a full CV and a comprehensive cover letter (all in English) setting out your reasons for applying for the post and outlining the qualifications experience, knowledge and skills that you feel you can bring to the role to:

Please include in the email subject: EU Fisheries Policy Officer.

Closing date: 8th April 2018 at midnight CET. Please consider that applications received after the closing date will be automatically discarded.



Shortlisting is based on CV and cover letter. Successful candidates will be asked to attend face to face interviews. A possibility of remote interview may be offered to candidates from abroad.

Please note that due to the large number of expected applications only successful candidates will be contacted.