UK gives notice on London Convention
The UK will this week give notice to leave the London Fisheries Convention, setting out to exclude fishing activity by vessels from five neighbouring countries within the UK 12-mile zone.
The 1964 convention, which pre-dates the UKâ€™s EU membership, provides the basis under which Belgian, Dutch, French, German and Irish vessels can operate with in the six and twelve nautical mile limits.
The two-year notice to end the London Convention starts tomorrow, the 3rd of July, with official notification made to the Irish, German, French Dutch and Belgian governments.
â€˜Leaving the London Fisheries Convention is an important moment as we take back control of our fishing policy. It means for the first time in more than fifty years we will be able to decide who can access our waters,â€™ said UK environment secretary Michael Gove.
â€˜This is an historic first step towards building a new domestic fishing policy as we leave the European Union â€“ one which leads to a more competitive, profitable and sustainable industry for the whole of the UK.â€™
He commented that as announced in the Queen's Speech, the Government will introduce a Fisheries Bill to control access to the UK's waters and set fishing quotas once we have left the EU.
NFFO chief executive Barrie Deas welcomed the decision to leave the London Fisheries Convention.
â€˜This is welcome news and an important part of establishing the UK as an independent coastal state with sovereignty over its own exclusive economic zone,â€™ he said.
Landings of fish caught with in the UK 12-mile zone by vessels from the five neighbouring countries covered by the London Convention are estimated by DEFRA to have amounted to 10,000 tonnes valued at Â£17 million in 2015.
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