On the day that legislation creating the powers for the UK to operate as an independent coastal state and manage its fish stocks sustainably outside the EU was being introduced into Parliament, Steve Double, Member of Parliament for St Austell and Newquay met with representatives of the Cornish fishing industry and the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations to discuss fishing matters.
The introduction of the Fisheries Bill delivers a legal guarantee the UK will leave the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) at the end of the Transition Period, in December 2020 - allowing the UK to control who may fish in our waters, and on what terms, for the first time since 1973.
The Bill ends current automatic rights for EU vessels to fish in British waters. In future, access to fish in UK waters will be a matter for the UK to negotiate and we will decide on the rules that foreign vessels must follow.
As well as powers to implement new deals negotiated with the EU and other coastal states, set quotas, fishing opportunities and days at sea, the Bill includes new measures for Devolved Governments and a single set of UK-wide fisheries objectives to ensure that fish stocks, and the marine environment, are better protected.
Changes to funding rules enabling the UK government to provide financial support for the breadth of what is currently funded by the EU’s European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, such as training and port improvements, are also included in the legislation.
Commenting, Steve said:
“On the momentous day that the Fisheries Bill was introduced, ending decades of control over our waters by the EU, I was delighted to meet with local and national representatives of the NFFO to discuss how I can work to support fishing communities through Brexit and in to the future.”
“With the tremendous work that our Cornish fishing communities in places like Mevagissey and Newquay recently highlight on national television, there has never been such a great opportunity for our fishermen to step forward and thrive once we get our waters back.”
“The Fisheries Bill is the start of this and I look forward to working with colleagues and the industry to make it reality.”