Federation sets out election priorities – Fishupdate.com

Federation sets out election priorities Published:  03 April, 2007

THE Scottish Fishermen’s Federation (SFF) has published a mini-manifesto outlining the main points of action that the newly-elected Scottish Government should address after the May election.

SFF chief executive, Bertie Armstrong, said: “We call upon all parliamentarians and in particular those forming the post-election administration to assist us in meeting the challenges which present themselves to one of Scotland’s most notable heritage industries.”

The main points in the SFF call for action are:

Clarity in the way that the interests of Scottish fishing are taken into account in the UK-wide decision-making process. This must include an assurance that this process will work properly, and if it doesn’t, then seek appropriate change.

Ensuring there is a team approach between Holyrood, SEERAD and the fishing industry on the following issues:

– The annual round of negotiations seeking the maximum sustainable catching opportunity for the Scottish fleet.

– Ensuring that regulation controls for 2007 – including days-at-sea, the cod recovery programme and discards – are managed in a fair and equitable manner.

– Ensuring that the UK Marine Bill – presently at the White Paper stage – takes proper account of the needs of Scottish fishing and recognises its socio-economic importance in making arrangements for Marine Spatial Planning, UK marine management and Marine Nature Conservation.

– Provide support in the continuous improvement of the public perception of the fishing industry, recognising that it is a sustainable, responsible and compliant sector.

Mr Armstrong said: “Whatever the political landscape after the May election, the proper support of the Scottish fishing industry is vitally important and we hope that all parliamentary candidates will recognise this during the forthcoming campaign.”

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