Over recent years, bluefin tuna stocks have gone "from heavy over-exploitation to progressive recovery," the EU said, while committing to uphold its tight control standards over the fishery also this season.

Based on previous experience and given the particularities of this year's fishing season, such as a 20 percent increase in the quota, a strict control and inspection program has been put in place.

It involves a "significant deployment" of inspectors, patrol vessels and aircrafts coordinated by the European Fisheries Control Agency (EFCA) and the member states concerned.