CONSERVATIVE MEP FOR SCOTLAND

2015 EU Fisheries Council - Ian Duncan MEP Reaction - Positive result for fishermen

16.12.2015.

The Conservative Fisheries Spokesman in the European Parliament, Ian Duncan, has broadly welcomed the results of the annual December Fish quota talks in Brussels. Rockall Haddock and West of Scotland Monkfish saw large increases in Total Allocated Catch (TAC), however West of Scotland Herring was given no catch allocation for 2016.

Many of the key announcements for the Scottish fleet were taken last week at the EU-Norway talks, but the headline figures for the Scottish industry from last night were as follows - Rockall Haddock- 21% increase to 1,906 tonnes; West Scotland Haddock- 47% increase to 4,141 tonnes; West of Scotland Monkfish- 20% increase to 1,349 tonnes; West of Scotland Hake- 20% increase to 4,583 tonnes. However Boarfish saw a cut of 20% to 2,710 tonnes and it has been recommended that fishing ceases altogether for West Coast Herring over the next year.

On the cod recovery plan, the decision was reached to maintain it in its current form. This was despite strong representations from The UK Government and others.

Commenting, Ian said:

"I think that the decisions taken last night are, on the whole, very positive for the Scottish industry. Coming on the back of  the EU-Norway talks last week, which saw quota increases for almost all of Scotland's 'staple' fish stocks, the decision last night to increase the quotas for West of Scotland Haddock, Monkfish and Hake, as well as Rockall Haddock, is extremely good news."

“However, I am concerned regarding the decision to give a zero TAC for West Coast Herring next year. Our Pelagic fishermen, already facing challenges in relation to access rights for mackerel, do not need another headache."

"With the first phase of the demersal discard ban just weeks away, the quota uplifts also agreed tonight should help what will be a challenging transition."

ENDS

Notes to editors

1) Ian Duncan is the Conservative MEP for Scotland.

Contact Andrew Johnston

Chief of Staff, Ian Duncan MEP