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Montevideo, February 23rd 2019 - 17:03 UTC

Scottish fishing industry calls for “clarity” on the draft agreement

Friday, November 16th 2018 - 08:57 UTC
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Prime Minister Theresa May insisted on Thursday the UK government would not accept any deal with the EU that linked access to fishing waters with trade Prime Minister Theresa May insisted on Thursday the UK government would not accept any deal with the EU that linked access to fishing waters with trade
Scottish Fishermen's Federation voiced concerns about a link between access for EU vessels to UK waters and tariff-free access for UK seafood suppliers to the EU Scottish Fishermen's Federation voiced concerns about a link between access for EU vessels to UK waters and tariff-free access for UK seafood suppliers to the EU

Members of the Scottish fishing industry have called for “clarity” on the implications of the draft agreement on leaving the EU Scottish Secretary David Mundell backed the draft Brexit deal despite concerns about its impact on the fishing industry.

The 585-page document said a new agreement would be reached on access to waters and quota shares. Fishing leaders, skippers and traders are seeking more specifics on the plan.
Prime Minister Theresa May insisted on Thursday the UK government would not accept any deal with the EU that linked access to fishing waters with trade.

The Aberdeenshire town of Peterhead is Europe's largest white fish port, where a new state of the art market opened earlier this year. It handles tens of millions of pounds worth of fish, including cod and haddock, annually. More than 5.000 boxes of fish were landed on Thursday morning.

The Scottish Fishermen's Federation (SFF) was formed in 1973, with the aim of protecting collective interests. As details of the Brexit deal emerged on Tuesday evening, it voiced concerns about a link between access for EU vessels to UK waters and tariff-free access for UK seafood suppliers to the EU market.

Chief executive Bertie Armstrong said: “The industry's priority has always been taking back control of decision-making over who catches what, where and when in our waters, so that we can end once and for all the grossly unfair situation where 60% of our stocks are taken, gratis, by boats from other EU nations.

”That would mean the UK becoming a fully independent coastal state with its own seat at all the relevant international fisheries negotiations from December 2020, and regaining its proud status as one of the world's major fishing nations. Negotiations over trade terms for seafood products would follow on from this.

“Any linkage between access and trade contravenes all international norms and practice and is simply unacceptable in principle.”

“Once we become a coastal state we can stop giving away 60% of the seafood that exits our waters and start using that for the national good,” he said. Mr Armstrong added that a Scottish government's report had indicated that this would be worth more than £500m and 5,000 jobs. “We need to get the best deal for Scottish fishing,” he said.

Categories: Politics, International.

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