Diane Dodds MEP Non-attached Member of the European Parliament
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Government must protect UK fishing interests: Dodds

DUP MEP Diane Dodds has said that the Government must give greater clarity on how it intends to preserve the interests of fisheries in all regions as the United Kingdom leaves the European Union.


Responding to the agreement reached by the UK and EU on the terms of an implementation period, Mrs Dodds said:


“When the British people voted to leave the European Union they also voted to leave the Common Fisheries Policy and take back control of our territorial waters. It is disappointing that the agreement announced yesterday by UK and EU negotiators on the Brexit implementation period has delayed the repatriation of these powers to 2020.


The terms of this deal state that quotas for 2020 will be set by the EU with some consultation with Her Majesty’s Government. Although we recognise that every negotiation requires give and take, this outcome falls short of stated UK negotiating objectives. We are led to question what guarantees there are that the EU will listen to the needs of the British industry. It is vital that Government outlines how extensive the consultation will be. Westminster should now provide guarantees on how it will protect our fishing industry during the transition period. This is particularly key in relation to how the Government intends to treat any further fisheries legislation formulated by the EU up until 2020. It is essential that Ministers address the concerns of the industry proactively in the days to come.


When we do take full control of fisheries powers residing in Brussels, we want to ensure that The Hague Preference system of awarding Northern Ireland quota to the Irish Republic is done away with. This year alone the value of local quota for cod ceded to the Irish Republic was £1 million. This must stop.”


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