Fish trade welcomes cut in IUU inspection charges Published: 13 September, 2011
THE Humber fish trade has welcomed the news that charges for inspection and paperwork to ensure that illegal, unregulated and unreported fish does not enter the ports of Grimsby and Immingham are to be reduced.
The local Trade Corridor Group had lobbied North East Lincolnshire (Grimsby) Council on behalf of the local seafood sector for charges to be at least maintained at their current level. A number of ports in other parts of the country had in fact increased their charges. Now the local authority has gone one better and REDUCED them.
Trade Corridor Group chairman Simon Dwyer said the IUU inspection regime was now in its second year and appeared to be working well locally.
“Some time ago we were informed that Defra had commenced a review of the charging regime across the UK. We made the point that North East Lincolnshire was unique in both hosting a busy seafood orientated border inspection post, and was home to Europe’s largest seafood processing cluster. Any increase in charges would be a burden that employs several thousand people locally.”
North East Lincolnshire Council reviewed its charges and found a regular and well-controlled trade from Iceland, Norway, the Faroe Islands, Canada and China. This meant that the audit process for IUU fish was not as demanding as in other UK ports where there may be less well regulated documentation. The lower charges have already come into effect.
Grimsby Institute’s Professor Mike Dillon said: “The Corridor was established specifically by the Institute to remove inspection barriers to trade and it is good to see it working as planned.”
Grimsby FMA chief executive Steve Norton said anything to help reduce costs in a difficult economic climate was good news. He also welcomed the announcement that a new border post is to be built at Immingham, which would cut out a lot of unnecessary fish transport journeys and overheads.