Tag Archives: UK government

UK response to visa rule concerns branded an ‘insult’ to Scottish fishermen

New rules came into force last week affecting the visas most commonly used by non-UK fishermen. The industry heavily criticised the move, saying it could lead to businesses in the Highlands and islands closing down. Now Alistair Carmichael, MP for Orkney and Shetland, has raised these concerns directly with the Home Office and says the UK Government’s decision is “economically illiterate, politically inept and morally indefensible”. However, new rules came into force last week banning anyone on transit visas from carrying out work on fishing boats, and requiring them to get a skilled workers visa instead. >click to read< 12:25

Fishing deals expected to net £750 million-plus catch for UK fleet in 2023

An earlier agreement between the UK, European Union and Norway covered six key North Sea fish stocks, including cod, haddock and herring, and access to other waters. The outcome of those talks was expected to deliver additional quota worth £213m to the UK fishing industry. Separate discussions with fellow north-east Atlantic “coastal states” will deliver an extra £256m of quota, while a deal with Norway adds another £5m, according to the government. >click to read< 08:54

Questions over Teesside Freeport’s role when it comes to washed up fish – Andy Brown

A new deep water port is being created to service the offshore wind industry and new facilities are being established to build the turbines. In theory a bustling freeport will usher in a new age of industrial prosperity for a long-neglected part of the north with pesky regulations being swept away so that they don’t delay progress. There is, of course, much to be admired about the project. Unfortunately rushing to build without worrying too much about the consequences for others can also bring big problems. In this case those downsides are having a huge impact on the livelihoods of Yorkshire fishing communities and on the health of a huge area of our coastline. >click to read< 11:26

Panel to investigate crab and lobster deaths on north-east coast of England

The UK government is to set up an independent expert panel to investigate the cause of the mass die-offs of crabs and lobsters on the north-east coast of England, it has announced. The panel will consider the impact of dredging around a freeport development in Teesside and the presence of pyridine, a chemical pollutant, among other potential causes, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said. Mark Spencer, the fisheries minister, said on Tuesday: “I recognise fishing communities in the north-east want as thorough an assessment as possible into the crab and lobster deaths last year. >click to read< 07:35

Scots fishers urge ministers to resist campaign for giant freezer trawler

The UK Government is being urged to ignore a “concerted campaign” to deprive Scottish fishers of quota in favour of a huge, foreign-owned freezer trawler operating out of a British port. Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association chief executive Ian Gatt and Shetland Fishermen’s Association executive officer Simon Collins said lobbying by the vessel’s owner, East Yorkshire-based UK Fisheries, to secure more fish “must be resisted”. Mr Gatt said: “This vessel operates out of Hull, but is owned primarily by Dutch and Icelandic interests, is largely operated by a non-UK crew and processes its catch on board. >click to read< 09:31

Jimmy Buchan: energy costs will drive fish processors out of business

Mr Buchan has sent a letter to the two candidates vying to become Prime Minister, Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak, ahead of their campaigning visits to Scotland tomorrow. In the letter Mr Buchan, the chief executive of the Scottish Seafood Association, warned that on top of Brexit and Covid, escalating fuel costs were having a “devastating impact on our ability to remain viable”. Meanwhile, the body representing the fishing industry has also issued an open letter to the prospective PMs. Elspeth Macdonald, chief executive of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation, highlighted the need for “fairer decision making” over use of the seas in order to prevent fishing becoming “collateral damage” ahead of the spansion of wind farms. >click to read< 15:21

Your favourite takeaway could set you back following green-energy expansion

Fish and chip fans fear the future of their favourite takeaway, as widening offshore wind farms will soon be constructed in precious fishing territory. Fishermen across the country have criticised the Prime Minister’s plans to increase the number of wind turbines in the sea, meaning over half of their legal fishing territory could be lost by 2050. A damning report outlined in the Spatial Squeeze in Fisheries report indicated how 56 percent of Scottish waters could become prohibited for fishing boats. The Prime Minister’s plans would see fish go uncaught, leaving restaurants no choice but to rely on importing. One chip shop in Kent recently shut down as its owner refused to charge £14 per person for a portion of Britain’s most famous dish. >click to read< 15:27

‘Boris, where’s your Russian sanctions?’ asks F/V Altaire’s First Mate

The first mate of local pelagic trawler F/V Altaire has written to prime minister Boris Johnson urging the UK Government to act over Russian factory ships fishing for blue whiting in UK waters around 100 miles to the west of Shetland. Colin Leask said there were 11 Russian vessels presently in the UK’s shared zone with the Faroe Islands fishing for a “ridiculously inflated” quota of 75,000 tonnes of blue whiting. The crewman’s appeal is the latest attempt by the industry to get the government to close a loophole that enables Russian vessels to fish inside UK waters at a time of “supposedly strict sanctions” against the country in response to the invasion of Ukraine. >click to read< 16:50

UK: Fishing industry promised ‘bright future’ with £75m funding boost

The funding, which will be used to modernise UK ports and processing facilities, has been welcomed by industry bodies who have faced challenges in the sector following Brexit. Announcing the funding, the UK Government said it would go towards better infrastructure, strengthened supply chains, new jobs, and an investment in skills. The move will see £65m go to modernising ports and harbours, while £10m will encourage new entrants into the sector, and train and upskill those already working in it. >click to read< 07:47

Factory Trawler Kirkella may be sold or moved abroad’ after devastating fishing deal

The Kirkella has been standing idle since December 2020 when the UK lost its rights to fish in Norwegian waters following Brexit. UK Fisheries, who operate the Kirkella, said that the new deal struck with the Scandinavian country leaves the crew with a quota amounting to just one week’s work. The fishing pact will see fleets from both countries able to catch up to 30,000 tonnes of cod, haddock and hake in the North Sea according to the government. But the owners of the Kirkella said it won’t be enough to sustain their ship or crew of 30. >click to read< 10:03

UK secures fishing access and quotas with Norway

Today (21 December 2021) the UK, negotiating as an independent coastal State, has reached an agreement with Norway on fisheries access and quotas for 2022. These discussions mark the start of a new arrangement between the UK and Norway, in which both parties permit some access to each other’s waters and exchange a number of fish quotas in the North Sea and the Arctic. The agreement on mutual access will allow respective fleets more flexibility to target the stocks in the best condition throughout the fishing year, supporting a more sustainable and economically viable fishing industry. >click to read< 09:07

Government ‘disappointed’ by French fishermen’s threats to block exports to UK

The Government has said it is “disappointed” by threats of protest action by French fishermen amid the escalating dispute over post-Brexit fishing rights,,, Talks are ongoing between Britain, France and the European Commission to settle the main source of contention, which is the number of licences to fish in waters around the British coastline for smaller French vessels which can prove they have historically operated there. But French fishermen are “exasperated” by the “endless months of waiting” and are ready to “exert more pressure” on the UK, according to the fishing committee for the northern Hauts-de-France region. >click to read< 19:15

NFFO hits the UK Government for betrayal of the fishing industry during the Brexit negotiations

There are some in the fishing industry whose trust in the Government has been irrevocably shattered. The fishing industry was given assurances from the top of government, the Prime Minister, senior cabinet ministers and Chief Negotiator himself, Lord Frost, that our industry would not be sold out in negotiations with Europe, as it had been by Edward Heath in 1973. There was always a risk. Even when the fishing industry was used as the poster-child for Brexit, the NFFO paid for and distributed thousands of flags bearing the message,,, >click to read< 08:45

French and Jersey fishermen must talk

STOP – arrêt! It is time for the Jersey and French fishermen to sort out their problems for themselves. It is no use their relying on the parliamentary dignities of Paris and London, nor the statesmen of Jersey or Normandie – they do not understand your problems because they are not fishermen. For the past 20 or so years you have fished together under the agreement of the Bay of Granville. You worked this out together and you can do it again. >click to read< 14:17 From Denise Waller

Hull trawler sold to Greenlandic fishing interests as owners blame Government ‘failure’ in post-Brexit negotiations

The Icelandic owners of Norma Mary have sold the 32-year-old trawler, mainly crewed by fishermen from Hull and Grimsby, to Greenlandic fishing interests, blaming “the Government’s failure to negotiate fishing opportunities”. News of the sale emerged as Hull West and Hessle MP Emma Hardy told the Commons on Thursday that the country had been promised a “‘sea of opportunity’” that turned out to be no more than a stagnant millpond”.>click to read< 08:07

“It’s a peaceful protest,,, Why are French fishermen angry about Jersey’s post-Brexit fishing licences?!!

The issue is over fishing licences post-Brexit. Jersey is a British crown dependency, but it’s only 19km off the coast of France and around 250 French boats regularly fish the waters around the island, supporting around 900 families and another 2,000 jobs on shore. As part of Brexit related fishing talks it was agreed that French boats which had habitually fished around Jersey would be allowed to continue doing so, but would need new licences. Because of Jersey’s unusual status, owned by the British Crown but not actually part of the UK, these licences come from Jersey authorities, not the British government in London. But the fishermen say that when they received their licenses they had new requirements and limitations,,, >click to read< 11:29

France threatens to cut off the power to Jersey as leverage point in fishing rights dispute over UK water access

Responding to questions in the national assembly, Annick Girardin, the minister for maritime affairs, said she was “revolted” by the UK government’s behaviour over its waters and France was ready to retaliate. The British crown dependency of Jersey, the largest of the Channel Islands, relies on “the transmission of electricity by underwater cable”, Girardin said as she was questioned by assembly members, raising the supply as a point of leverage. “I would regret it if we were to get there,” the minister said, but “we will do so if we have to.” >click to read< 22:44

Brexit trade deal leaves Welsh fishermen ‘devastated’

New rules to replace the EU Common Fisheries Policy mean 76 French and Belgian trawlers can fish within six miles of the Welsh coast until 2026. It means many Welsh fishermen may struggle to survive, the Welsh Fishermen’s Association said. The UK government said it protected fishermen’s rights. But those working in Wales said they were already struggling with export red tape. Barry Thomas, who voted for Brexit, said Prime Minister Boris Johnson “bottled” the deal “at the last minute”, after promising to keep foreign trawlers outside the UK’s 12-mile limit. >click to read< 08:40

Battle lines being drawn over fishing rights

Fish have been served up among the main bones of contention between the UK government and the European Union. The negotiating mandate published on Thursday at Westminster is a long way from the vision for a future relationship for managing wild fish stocks in the European Commission’s proposals. That comes as no surprise to those who have seen the pre-negotiation posturing from the rhetoric of the 2016 Brexit campaign, to the priorities set out by Brussels along with the Withdrawal Agreement. >click to read< 23:13