Some points:

  • The Conservative manifesto promised to leave the London Convention is to be acted upon
  • The London Convention 1964 predates us joining the European Union
  • The CFP built on this historic agreement which enshrined fishing rights stretching hundreds of years; and the Danes and probably others are already planning to contest this in international courts
  • Many Ministers since 1964 have been well advised to leave this agreement in place
  • Some suggest this is one of the few things the EU want from us and so that it is odd that this not a bargaining point
  • But perhaps not so surprising given that the Scottish Tory gains were in fishing constituencies

UK takes key step towards fair new fishing policy after Brexit

Defra: The United Kingdom will take an historic step towards delivering a fairer deal for the UK fishing industry this week by triggering the withdrawal from an arrangement that allowed foreign countries access to UK waters, Environment Secretary Michael Gove confirmed today.

As part of moves to prepare the UK for the opportunities of leaving the European Union, the Government will officially begin withdrawal from the London Fisheries Convention.

The London Fisheries Convention, signed in 1964 before the UK joined the European Union, allows vessels from five European countries to fish within six and 12 nautical miles of the UK’s coastline. It sits alongside the EU Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), which allows all European vessels access between 12 and 200 nautical miles of the UK and sets quotas for how much fish each nation can catch. On Monday the UK will notify the other Member States signed up to the London Fisheries Convention, triggering a two-year withdrawal period – in a similar way to the Article 50 letter which began a two-year withdrawal from the EU. Securing a fairer deal for the UK fishing industry is a Manifesto pledge and one of the Government’s key objectives for Brexit.

When we leave the EU, we will no longer be bound by the Common Fisheries Policy but without action, restrictions under the historic London Fisheries Convention would still apply. By withdrawing from the London Fisheries Convention we will no longer be bound by the existing access agreements. Instead we will regain control of fishing access to our waters and become fully responsible for the management of fisheries so we can ensure a fair, sustainable and profitable industry for all our fishermen.  Click here to read more

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