Prime Minister Boris Johnson Brexit trade deal with the EU is far from making Britain happy as it’s been criticised by Fishing for Leave, who said it appeared to be a “pretty dismal deal” for Britain’s long-suffering fishermen.
After seeing details of the agreement, the group which represents the UK fishermen released a statement warning they’re not pleased with what they had read so far, saying, “Sadly, from what’s emerging, the trade deal treaty is far from a clean break to international normality/law.”
“The emerging details on what’s been agreed in relation to fishing would seem to be a cop-out to secure an overall pretty dismal deal, and that fishing community who paid the ultimate price on the way in will get a poor settlement to pay for a deal on the way out.”
Fishing for Leave published a list of major demands for the industry and said if the Prime Minister’s deal with the EU fails to deliver the points “it is a p*** poor effort”. The demand includes a demand for the allocation of quota to be based on zonal attachment, with the 60 per cent of quota caught by EU boats in UK waters going to UK boats.
The UK Prime Minister’s deal with the EU states that British vessels will be entitled to catch around two-thirds of quota in the UK waters.
Meanwhile, under the Commons Fisheries Policy (CFP), British boats could catch only around half of the fish in UK waters. But the UK fishermen will not be handed the new benefits overnight.
The terms of the new agreement also said the fishing changes will be phased in over a five-and-a-half-year transition.
The group also accused Mr Johnson of caving into Brussels’ demands to effectively establish a fishing backstop, saying the PM had signed up to a deal “whereby the EU can retaliate with tariffs on goods should the UK seek to move to a position akin to the other Nordic nations after the five-and-a-half-year period.”
The five-and-a-half-year transition period agreed was beaten down from the initial 14 years first demanded by the EU.
Fishing for Leave warned the deal would lead to a desperate situation for fishermen on January 1 while adding that Britain would find itself “stuck like a broken record” as the EU continues to enjoy access to the UK’s rich fishing territory.
“The increase in quota which will be given to British boats under the deal amounts to just a bit more fish to save some political face,” according to the group. The difference is that the UK saw a small part of the fishing quota as a symbol of its sovereignty.
The UK government made concessions as the deadline for a deal closes, but Mr Johnson insisted the result was that the UK would again be an independent coastal state with full control of its waters.
Mr Johnson promised to pump £100 million into the UK’s fishing industry to get it ready for the addition of quota increases in the coming years, sadly, Fishing for Leave dismissed the Prime Minister’s offer, describing it to be a bribe designed to sell his deal to fishermen.
“The PM’s announcement made great fanfare of the fishing industry getting a £100 million modernisation fund. We are sure the Tory commentariat and MPs will hope this somehow makes the various fishing associations see this climb down of a deal more positively.
“However, a bribe of £100m is not of greater advantage than repatriating 100 per cent of our resources instantly, not 25 per cent over 5years, along with ending equal access immediately too.”