Morley Claims Deal Is Good –

Morley Claims Deal Is Good Fishing Monthly Published:  16 January, 2003

THE UK’s main Common Fisheries Policy reform objectives were achieved at December’s negotiations in Brussels, UK Fisheries Minister Elliot Morley claimed in the House of Commons today.

He said the new-look CFP,would provide a firmer base for effective fisheries management.”We shall be working under a stronger and sounder CFP than we have had before.The new framework looks very much as the UK wanted.”

He said key elements of the revised CFP are:commitment to replace annual horse-trading for quotas with ‘multi-annual’ stock management;proper recovery plans for depleted stocks;continuation of 6 and 12 mile limits, which will protect inshore fishermen;no adjustment of stock allocations in the North Sea in favour of Spain and Portugal;ending of (a) state aid for fishing vessels and (b)aid for the transfer of EU fishing vessels to third countries, from 31 December 2004;limitations on modernisation aid;major improvements in enforcement arrangements;provision to establish Regional Advisory Councils;extension of the closed area off eastern Scotland and Northumberland to industrial fishing.There is also to be a review by ICES of the impact of industrial fishing on fish stocks;an EU – wide discards action plan which may include use of more selective nets and raise minimum landing sizes.

Mr Morley added the Government is urgently exploring options for helping UK communities through their difficulties including further vessel decommissioning and will make an announcement as soon as possible.