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No Deal Reached In Next Round Of Mackerel Talks


GENERAL - The second round of talks in London between the EU, Norway, Iceland and the Faroes to try and agree a deal on mackerel quotas for 2011 has ended in deadlock.

The Scottish Fishermen’s Federation and its constituent member, the Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association, are pressing for a deal that recognises Scotland’s historical share of the catch in the north-east Atlantic mackerel fishery, whilst at the same time adhering to the recommended scientific advice on catch uptake so as to protect the stock.

Following today’s failure to reach an agreement, Ian Gatt, chief executive of the Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association said: “We are bitterly disappointed that no agreement was reached during this second round, given that it proved impossible to accommodate the aspirations of Iceland and the Faroes.

“We are pleased, however, that the EU has not given in to the excessive demands from Iceland and the Faroes and has adopted a tough and realistic negotiating stance throughout.”

Although no date has been set for a third round of talks, it is possible that negotiations could resume at the next North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission meeting due to be held in London in 10 days time.

Mr Gatt said: “It is essential than any deal reached must ensure that mackerel is harvested at sustainable levels whilst at the same time protecting the rights of those who have traditionally fished for the species in the north-east Atlantic.”