Isles MP Alistair Carmichael has written to UK fisheries minister Huw Irranca-Davies, urging him to resist the extension of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) to apply to recreational sea anglers.
Under the new proposals recreational fishermen would be required to register their boat as a fishing vessel and record their catch as part of the UK’s annual quota for certain species.
Mr Carmichael said: “If this change goes through then it will affect a great many people in the Northern Isles. It may make sense for some parts of the EU like Italy where there is a problem with the amount of bluefin tuna taken by recreational fishermen but to use that as a justification for this change is indefensible.
“These proposals are a perfect example that the Common Fisheries Policy approach of making one size fit all, does not work. In Europe a large number of sea anglers fish commercially but within the Northern Isles and throughout the UK, sea angling is done for pleasure not profit. These proposals are completely inappropriate for the UK.
“The right of local people to lease a small boat and to use it for recreational use, including fishing is an important part of our island heritage. Blighting it with the bureaucratic nightmare of the CFP strikes at the heart of part of our traditional island life.”