EU Fisheries Council delivers a positive result for UK fishermen

14-Dec-2016 @ 10:30

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EU Fisheries Council delivers a positive result for UK fishermen

Conservative Fisheries spokesman Ian Duncan MEP has welcomed the results of the annual fish quota talks in Brussels which today delivered increase in quota for many key stocks for the Scottish fleet.

The deal reached by EU Fisheries ministers early this morning includes increased quota for North Sea cod (+17%) and whiting (+17%), both of which will be covered by the landing obligation in 2017.

Many of the key decisions were taken last month at the EU-Norway talks, but the headline figures from today's announcement include an increase of 46% in North Sea prawn quota while the West of Scotland prawn quota remains unchanged. Northern monkfish increase by 20%, west coast haddock decreases by 47% while Rockall haddock sees a 45% increase.

Mr Duncan said: “These decisions reflect the improving health of the stocks in the waters around the UK. This is down to the tireless work of fishermen to restore stocks to healthy levels and it is right that the improvements in the sustainability are recognised in the quotas.

“In the future, it is likely that the Total Allowable Catches for the species of the North Sea will be settled either in a series of bilateral negotiations (UK-EU, Norway-EU and UK-Norway) or in a trilateral negotiation between the three fishing powers.

“The current process often lends itself to achieving unsatisfactory results for our fishermen. Brexit will change this. The UK will not be bound by the Relative Stability Key – the fixed percentage of quota entitlement imposed on all EU countries. UK and Scottish Fishing Ministers will be better placed to get a deal that reflects the needs of the industry.”

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