Brexit will allow new start – NFFO

LEAVING the European Union will allow Britain an opportunity to manage its fisheries in a different way, said the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations (NFFO).
It will allow the UK to build a policy while learning the lessons from its membership of the Common Fisheries Policy over the last 30 years, mainly by focusing on things to avoid.
The NFFO, which represents fishermen in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, said Britain should look at the experience of non EU countries whose fishery management has evolved in a different way. While it does not name those countries, the obvious examples would be Norway and Iceland.
It is also urging the government to simplify the regulatory regime and reduce the regulatory burden and to develop an effective integrated fisheries administration, along with reducing bureaucracy and cost in fisheries management.
This, says the NFFO, can be done by shifting away from prescriptive micro-management to a focus on outcomes and results (particularly but not exclusively in the realm of technical conservation measures).
‘We envisage two layers of management post-Brexit: the design and implementation of measures by the UK authorities that will apply to all vessels operating within UK waters.
‘These would apply to UK vessels and to non-UK vessels operating within UK waters alike. Technical conservation measures would be the obvious example.
‘Where there are shared stocks, it will be desirable to have a mechanism to jointly set agreed exploitation rates, quota shares, access arrangements and long term management strategies
‘We anticipate that the UK will have much more freedom of movement than under the CFP to design and apply a customised management regime covering technical conservation measures, fleet management and capacity, discard and market policy.’
Picture: NFFO chief executive Barrie Deas