Call For Support For Survival Amendments –

Call For Support For Survival Amendments Fishing Monthly Published:  11 November, 2002

SNP MEP Ian Hudghton has called on the European Parliament Fisheries Committee to support his amendments in a crucial vote scheduled to take place tomorrow in Brussels.

Mr Hudghton said the Committee is voting on the principal proposal on the Reform of the Common Fisheries Policy for a Regulation on the Conservation and Sustainable Exploitation of Fisheries Resources, which includes key proposals relating to access, the 6-12 mile coastal zones, the Shetland Box and regional management.

“Whilst the Committee rapporteur has attempted to impose strict time limits on the restrictions to access, I have tabled a number of counter amendments to foil the attempts to liberalise fisheries and give carte blanche to fleets with no historical interest in fishing grounds; grounds where stocks are already severely depleted and whose very future is in question.To put it frankly, these are “survival amendments” for the North Sea fishing grounds.

“The Commission proposal itself calls for free access to the North Sea from the end of 2002, and the Iberian authored draft report starts from this premise and goes precariously further, calling for the 6-12 miles zones to permanently expire after five years, and for the prior authorisation procedure in the Shetland Box to be brought to an end in 2004.”.

That is why he had gone even further than the Commission proposal, calling for the restrictions in access to the North Sea to be maintained indefinitely.