Wednesday, 21 November 2018

Tory Brexit Withdrawal Agreement Sells Out Scotland's Fishing Industry

Special Deal for Northern Ireland Puts Scots at Competitive Disadvantage

The SNP Environment and Rural Affairs Spokesperson has slammed the UK government’s Withdrawal Agreement for putting Northern Irish fishing boats at a competitive advantage, leaving Scottish fishing boats behind.

Speaking after a debate of the Fisheries Bill in the House of Commons, Deidre Brock MP has expressed her serious concerns that arrangements in the Prime Minister’s Withdrawal Agreement have sold out Scotland’s fishing sector, breaking the promises that were made to Scotland in the wake of the Brexit vote.

Under the Withdrawal Agreement text, fishing boats registered in Northern Ireland would continue to gain zero-tariff access to the EU and UK markets, but fishing boats registered in Scotland and other parts of the UK would not.

Answering questions from Joanna Cherry QC MP before a House of Commons Committee this morning, Dr Holger Hestermeyer, a Senior Research Fellow at the Transnational Law Institute said that ‘Northern Ireland will get special treatment’ under the Withdrawal Agreement.

Commenting, SNP spokesperson on Environment and Rural Affairs, Deidre Brock MP said:

“The Tory sell-out of Scotland’s fishing industry is not only a slap in the face for Scotland’s hard-working fishing fleet, but shows the UK government’s complete disregard for Scotland in the Brexit negotiations more widely.

“Facing a competitive disadvantage to their counterparts in Northern Ireland, this news will come as a huge blow to Scotland’s fishing industry. Scotland’s fishers will lose the benefits that the EU market currently affords to Scotland while Northern Ireland will keep them.

“Whilst the Prime Minister and her Cabinet spend all their time trying to win back the favour of the DUP, they should really be waking up to reality and reversing their plans to sell out the fishing industry in Scotland.”
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