Fisheries deal disappointing, say industry leaders

Fishing leaders have criticised the Brexit deal, but insisted they will “roll up their sleeves” to secure improvements.

It comes as MPs discuss the Bill in the House of Commons today, amid complaints they have been given only five hours to debate it.

Chairman of Shetland Fishermen’s Association (SFA) James Anderson said the fisheries deal was disappointing.

“The deal is significantly worse than what was pushed for, and promised to us, by the government,” he said.

“It was agreed on Christmas Eve, denying us the opportunity to examine the detail and highlight the obvious problems with it.

“By signing up to a deal where increases in quota shares for some stocks fall short of what we would normally have obtained through quota swapping mechanisms, the government has taken away the shine from the headline gains.

“But it’s onward and upward now and we will work hard to hold the Prime Minister to account on what he says the deal will deliver, especially after the initial five-and-a-half year transition.

“The last few years have been incredibly focused on Brexit for us and we will continue now to make sure we get everything we can out of this deal.”

SFA executive officer Simon Collins said he looked forward to a constructive dialogue with Marine Scotland on an improved management regime for local waters, “particularly on the occupation of traditional fishing grounds by gillnetters and the new catching policy that will replace an unworkable discard ban”.

Isles MP Alistair Carmichael said he would not support the deal ahead of today’s debate.

Speaking yesterday he said: “We have a five hour Zoom call which is our virtual sitting of parliament.

“What we’re debating is a Bill and, as at 11.10 on Tuesday with a debate that starts at 9.30 on Wednesday, the government haven’t yet published the Bill.”


Add Your Comment
  • John M Scott

    • January 1st, 2021 13:56

    Let me get this right; Alistair Carmichael would have rather had a ‘ No Deal’ BREXIT. What a hypocrite. Like a spoilt child throwing the teddy bear out of the pram because he couldn’t get his way, and make everyone else suffer. As we did throughout two world wars, and other issues affecting this United Kingdom, we make decisions as a collective body, not a minority group of whinging kids.

    As for the Fisheries policy, fishermen across the whole of the UK now have a five years breathing space to make a real impact by marketing their products to the rest of the country, and by developing a sustainable British based solution to sharing our resources in the territorial waters around our coasts. They are now in the driving seat, now the European Union.


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