Albania’s waters vary from a large shelf, which is easy to trawl, in the north and deep water with a rocky seabed in the south. The key commercial species include several species of demersals, small and large pelagic fish, crustaceans and molluscs. Approximately half of Albania’s fish production is exported to the EU, mainly to Italy and Greece.
The licensed Albanian fishing fleet is small, consisting of around only 160 vessels; however, many of these operate only on an intermittent basis and there are many vessels fishing without licenses. A lack of effective management means that many coastal areas are over-fished and some fisheries, such as small pelagic fisheries (such as sardines an anchovies) are underexploited.
Albania is receiving finance from a number of external sources, such as the World Bank and the EU INTERREG II programme to help develop its fishing industry, increase the incomes of fishing communities and achieve sustainable use of marine resources.
Albania is a contracting party to ICCAT and GFCM.