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Ian Hudghton
Scottish National Party
Member of the European Parliament

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Press Releases
8 December
SNP publish ten priorities to place fishing communities on road to recovery

In the run up to Wednesday’s pre EU Council fisheries debate in the Scottish Parliament on, the Scottish National Party today published what they believe must be the Labour/Liberal coalition government’s top ten priorities that will firmly place Scotland’s fishing communities on the road to recovery.

Shadow Fisheries Minister Richard Lochhead MSP and the SNP’s Fisheries Spokesperson in the European Parliament Ian Hudghton MEP outlined the priorities that the SNP is demanding should be adopted by Fisheries Minister Ross Finnie to save our fishing communities from further damage.  

  • Decoupling of cod management from other species

  • Increase in quotas including substantial increase of haddock quota

  • Increase in days at sea allocated to Scottish vessels

  • Ongoing and revised aid package and retention of current £13.2m underspend, including support for onshore and fish processing industries package

  • Haddock promotion campaign

  • Support for campaign to scrap the CFP and replace with effective, locally controlled, conservation and management policy

  • Scotland must lead the UK’s delegation at the EU Fisheries Council

  • Secure quota from decommissioned vessels for active vessels

  • A phased reduction in industrial fishing in the North Sea

  • A science review  of fish stock levels and assessment methodology 

Speaking today in Aberdeen, Mr Lochhead commented:

“Last year in Brussels, the UK Government left Scotland defenceless at the negotiating table and our fishing communities were gutted by Europe’s Franz Fischler as a result. That must not be allowed to happen again as long as Scotland is trapped in the CFP.  

“Given the North Sea is teeming with fish following an increase in stocks especially the record-breaking haddock stock and that scores more of our white fish vessels have been scrapped by the government, the only way must be up for quota and the number of days at sea allocated to Scotland this December.  Anything else will leave the Scottish fishing industry on life-support and would be unforgiveable.

“ Between now and next week, Ross Finnie must discover the fighting spirit he woefully lacked last year and he must demand that he takes over from the inexperienced UK Minister as head of the UK’s negotiating team in Europe.”  

Ian Hudghton MEP added:

 “The CFP has been a disaster for Scotland’s fisheries dependent communities, largely due to betrayal and ineptitude on the part of successive UK governments. 30 years ago, a UK Tory government declared the fishing industry “expendable” in EU negotiations, and last December a Labour/Liberal coalition voted directly against Scotland’s interests in the Council of Ministers, and now seem likely to support a further entrenchment of EU power in an EU constitution. Enough is enough – Ross Finnie now faces his last chance to show that he is capable of standing up for Scotland in Europe.”

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