Brexit deal has ‘smashed people’s dreams’ says fishing boss
Last month, Boris Johnson secured a zero quotas and zero tariffs Brexit trade deal with the EU, days before the end of the transition period. The new deal came into effect at 11pm on December 31.
During negotiations throughout last year, fishing was one of the key issues and talks were gridlocked over fishing rights in UK waters.
Under the new deal, EU vessels will continue to fish in UK waters up until at least 2026.
But UK fishing boats will get a greater share of the fish plundered in British waters.
Now, a German fisherman has lashed out at the EU for agreeing to this deal saying it is “cherry-picking”.
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Kai-Arne Schmidt, managing director in the Kutterfisch headquarters in Cuxhaven, Germany, said: “The deal hurts because we have to give the British another 25 percent of the catch value by 2026.
“These are of course the expensive types of fish: haddock, cod, hake, monkfish, herring, saith and mackerel.”
Mr Schmidt went on to argue how his vessels fish in Scottish waters and said: “You have to let that sink in.
“We fish in Scottish waters. The Scots flatly rejected Brexit.”
His cutters could also go into Norway at the same time but Oslo stopped access until a new deal with the EU was negotiated, which is being hammered out now.
It comes as other EU fishermen attacking the Brexit trade deal.
Patrick Murphy, CEO of the Cork-based Irish South & West Fish Producers Organization (IS&WFPO), accused the bloc of “betraying” his country in a scorching takedown of the agreement.
He said the deal denies Irish fishermen the right to work in waters where they have traditionally operated for centuries.
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Mr Murphy told Express.co.uk he had trawled through the agreement in terms of its implications for the Irish fishing industry and had reached some gloomy conclusions.
He said: “Can we as an industry trust Brussels to have Ireland’s best interests at heart? I think not.
“For example, on the issue of access to waters, the French fleet continues to have the right to fish within the 12-mile limit of the inhabited Channel Islands of Jersey, Guernsey, Alderney and Sark but the Irish fleet is excluded from the waters surrounding the uninhabited Rock of Rockall that is closer to the Irish mainland than it is to the Scottish mainland.
“Species such as herring in the Irish Sea were all but gifted to the UK while herring in the English Channel were kept by our EU ‘partners’.
“There are many more such examples.”
He continued: “I know my country’s history: the invasion, plantation, imprisonment, starvation, deportation and slavery endured by successive generations of Irish people from the late 16th Century while we continue to have six counties on our Ireland claimed as part of the United Kingdom.
“This, to my mind, is the reason the European Commission and Council felt they could betray our country, our people and our Industry while betraying their own much-vaunted core principles and treaties.
“How can Europe stand over this continuing colonisation of our waters while trading away their benefit from our coastal communities to far-distant communities lying between the Frisian Islands and north-west Spain in direct contradiction of its own supposed policies?”
Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg
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