Keep Farming And Fishing Apart –

Keep Farming And Fishing Apart Fish Farming Today Published:  04 July, 2002

MEP says fisheries and agriculture councils should stay in being

SNP Euro-MP Ian Hudghton today called on the EU Council of Ministers to scrap plans to merge the Fisheries and Agriculture Councils. Speaking at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Mr Hudghton said the surprise decision taken at the recent European Council meeting in Seville to merge the councils was another blow to the EU’s fishing industry and must be reconsidered.

“ The distinctive needs and requirements of fisheries and the fishing industry cannot be left to play second fiddle to agriculture.

“A cursory glance at a map of Europe is enough to explain why some states are particularly interested in Fisheries, while others play scant regard.

“Land-locked countries such as Luxembourg and Austria have little interest in fisheries.What’s more,it is highly likely that even fishing countries will put agriculture first given its relative weight economically, with fisheries merely being tagged to the end of the Agriculture Council meetings.”

Fisheries is a special case when it comes to its regulation and cannot be put in the same category as agriculture.And regulation in fisheries is very different from what is regulated under the Common Agriculture Policy – fish by their very nature know no boundaries.

“This distinctiveness has moreover been realised through the de facto regionalisation of the CFP,various derogations from the Treaty and by the development of the acquis communautaire.”