Morley Defends Fish Deal As Good For Future –

Morley Defends Fish Deal As Good For Future Fishing Monthly Published:  23 December, 2002

UK FISHERIES Minister Elliot Morley says he only backed last week’s EU fish deal after he secured important concessions to help British fishermen stay viable

“The 15-days-per-month deal finally agreed more than doubled the number of days that had been on the negotiating table at the start of the week. The agreement also takes account of the conservation measures UK fishermen have already put in place.These had not been factored in, initially.Most fishermen will be able to operate under the new measures but there will undoubtedly be an impact,particularly in fisheries-dependent coastal communities.

“We are looking at ways to help the industry through the coming difficulties, as a matter of urgency. There are a range of options open to us.

“We will consider further decommissioning for those who want to leave the industry, whilst Regional Development Agencies (and their equivalents in Scotland and Northern Ireland) will be ready to assist fisheries-dependent communities.”

The fisheries Council had reached agreement on reform to the Common Fisheries Policy, with the UK securing its key objectives:-6 and 12 mile coastal limits renewed for 10 years, which will benefit local, inshore fishermen- subsidies for vessel-building (which the UK does not pay) to be phased out by end 2004- regional advisory committees, to include fishermen and other stakeholders, put in place- improved cross-EU enforcement and better monitoring by the Commission-a commitment to stock recovery plans where necessary and to a multi-annual approach to stock management.