At the Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting in Luxembourg, Fisheries Minister Huw Irranca-Davies said today’s result was the culmination of nine months of industry and Government working together to lobby and negotiate with the European Commission.
Specifically, the UK Government successfully argued that recreational catches should not be counted against quota – but they would be monitored to ensure they did not harm the recovery of depleted fish species such as Cod.
This is on top of many other achievements industry and the UK Government has been able to deliver over the last nine months. These include:
- Removing the requirement for all sales to be conducted through auctions;
- Increasing the threshold for the use of Vessel Monitoring Systems on board vessels from 10 metres to 12 metres;
- Prior notification of arrival in port to be for vessels over 12 metres only and for recovery stocks only.
These three additional achievements cut unnecessary bureaucratic red tape and ensure adopted measures are balanced.
Mr Irranca-Davies said: “Today’s achievement represents nine months’ hard work between industry and Government working together to deliver much needed change to the EU fisheries control regime.
“Industry told us changes were needed and we were prepared to make sure their concerns were heard. Together, we worked tirelessly to make sure we could deliver a win-win for everybody, right across the EU.
“I’m particularly pleased that we’ve been able to strike the right balance between ensuring recreational fishing does not impact adversely on the recovery of depleted species like Cod and Hake, while at the same allowing hobby fisherman to continue enjoying their favourite pastime without being tied up in red tape.
“We have fought hard over many months and made sure the voice of the UK fishing interests have been heard in Luxembourg.”