Challenging outcome for Scottish fisheries

Published by FiskerForum, 14-12-2017 · info@fiskerforum.dk

There’s a positive vibe from Scottish government, which states that an additional £44 million worth of fishing opportunities will be available to the Scottish fishing industry in the wake of this year’s December Council, part of an overall £44 million package that includes the outcomes of deals with the Faroes and Norway.

There are increases of 38% for North Sea whiting, 20% for monkfish, 22% for North Sea langoustine and 26% for west of Scotland haddock.

Nine of the 13 stocks the Scottish Government measures its sustainability performance against have been set in line with the maximum sustainable yield (MSY) for 2018.

‘At these challenging negotiations we have secured a strong result for Scotland’s fishermen, with deals worth more than £440 million to the industry and crucial increases for many of our key species,’ said rural economy secretary Fergus Ewing

‘Compared to 2017 this is an extra £44 million of fishing opportunities which means our industry will go into 2018 in strong health. I am also pleased that we received more flexibilities for ling, which will prevent our vessels from being tied up early when there is sufficient quota elsewhere.’

A key gain in terms of addressing a major potential choke species under the landing obligation was a new geographic flexibility provision for ling. This will help the industry deal with shortfalls in the North Sea by allowing them to transfer up to 15% of quota from the west of Scotland if needed. This is in addition to a 10% increase in the total allowable catch limit for the North Sea which will provide additional relief to quota shortages.

‘However I am frustrated that the European Commission was unwilling to accept any of our proposals on Cod and Norway lobster that would have assisted vessels operating on the west coast of Scotland,’ he said.

‘Brexit has loomed large over this year’s negotiations.  Now that these deals have been confirmed we will continue to seek real assurances from the UK Government that they will not trade access to Scottish waters away to secure other interests in the Brexit negotiations. We cannot and will not accept Scottish fishing interests being put at risk.’

Source: Scottish Government

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