Thursday, 15 May 2014

SNP Provide the Strongest Voice for Fishing


The SNP has today published its fishing priorities for Europe with a call to make sure that Westminster Governments can never again treat Scotland’s fishing communities as ‘expendable’.

The SNP has pledged to fight for maximum decision making on fisheries to be made in Scotland, for the EU to fully support the kind of innovations that the Scottish fleet has pioneered and to stand up for the needs of the fishing industry in Europe.

The fishing industry is far more significant to Scotland than it is to the UK with Scotland accounting for 87% of the UK’s landing of key stocks by value. Yet despite this, Scotland receives just 40% of the UK’s European Fisheries Fund allocation.

That money represents just 1.1% of the EU-wide total fisheries funding, despite the Scottish fishing industry landing 7% of the EU’s wild caught fish and being responsible for 12% of EU aquaculture production.

Commenting, SNP MEP Ian Hudghton said:

“When it comes to standing up for our fishing communities, the SNP provide the strongest voice.

“The SNP has made strong progress in Europe in recent years when it comes to fisheries, but there is more which we want to see happen – which is why we are publishing our priorities for fishing today.

“Scotland’s fishing industry needs a strong voice in Europe, a voice that will never turn its back on our fishing industry and describe the sector as ‘expendable’ as previous Westminster Governments so shamefully did.

“Today Westminster Governments are still letting down Scotland’s fishing communities, with Scotland receiving less than half of the UK’s European Fisheries Fund allocation despite 87% of UK landings by value coming ashore in Scotland.

“That funding imbalance and the complete lack of concern for our fishing industry at Westminster is the clearest example possible of why we need strong voices standing up for Scotland’s fishing sector.

“Only a vote for a strong team of SNP MEPs on the 22nd of May and a Yes vote in September will ensure the needs of Scotland’s fishing industry are always heard and let Scotland make our mark in Europe.”
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