An NFFO delegation met recently with Secretary of State, Michael Gove, as the UK and the EU move towards a crucial stage in the negotiations to leave the EU. The Federation reinforced the message, already well understood, that the EU’s aim to tie the UK into the CFP status quo, but with only a notional right to be consulted, would be wholly unacceptable, not only to the UK fishing industry, but to the voting public and strategically important politicians.
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Against the background of high level discussions on where fisheries powers should be located after they are repatriated from the CFP, the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisation has issued a statement on the distorting effect that devolution is having on fisheries management.
On the cusp of the next and crucial round of negotiations on the UK’s departure from the EU, the Prime Minister has spelt out the UK position on fisheries. Within the context of what is being regarded generally as a thoughtful and conciliatory speech on the UK’s future trading relationship with the EU, the Prime Minister said on fisheries:
As the cabinet debates the UK’s detailed positions on Brexit, the NFFO spells out why fishing should not be artificially tied to a transitional deal with the EU on trade.
Commission Publishes its Negotiation Positions on Fisheries: NFFO Executive Reaffirms its Brexit Positions
The European Commission has recently presented its positions on fisheries to the EU 27 member states, in preparation for the opening of Round 2 Brexit negotiations in Brussels.
Following a meeting between Dutch pulse fishermen and English inshore fishermen, just before Christmas, a voluntary agreement has been reached through which the Dutch pulse vessels will refrain from operating in some of the most sensitive areas off the English coast.
We are very sad to hear the news that former NFFO Chairman and President, David Scott, has died.
NFFO President, Tony Delahunty, has been honoured in the Queen’s New Year List for his services to the fishing industry. A working fishermen in an under-10 metre vessel until this November, Tony has been awarded the OBE in recognition of his huge contribution over many years.
Over the next ten months, the shape of the UK’s future outside the EU should become clearer. In order to fit with the parliamentary ratification processes in both the UK and EU, exit negotiations must be concluded by October 2018, if the Government’s timetable for departure in March 2019 is to be met.
This was a different kind of December Council in a number of important ways. Many delegations were delayed by weather; UK fisheries Minister George Eustice returned early to London to participate in a crucial parliamentary vote; and we felt the sharp end of the EU’s inflexible approach to maximum sustainable yield. The Commission was in fact particularly intransigent throughout the negotiations. It also seemed to forget that the centrepiece of its policies is the landing obligation that fully comes into force on 1st January 2019 and that all TAC decisions ought to support, rather than undermine, that particular policy - which is going to be difficult enough to implement as it is.