EU boats will not ac­cess our seas, say fish­er­men

Scottish Daily Mail - - News - By Michael Black­ley Scot­tish Po­lit­i­cal Ed­i­tor

SCOTS fish­er­men have con­demned sug­ges­tions that Eu­ro­pean boats could re­tain wide­spread ac­cess to Bri­tain’s wa­ters as part of Theresa May’s Brexit deal.

Se­nior Eu­ro­pean diplo­mats want any tem­po­rary cus­toms union to guar­an­tee that EU ves­sels can con­tinue to fish in UK wa­ters.

But Scots Tory MPs said they will fight against any de­ci­sion to di­lute UK con­trol of the fish­eries in­dus­try.

The Scot­tish Fish­er­men’s Fed­er­a­tion (SFF) yes­ter­day said EU ac­cess must only be granted ‘on UK terms’.

Sev­eral of the Tory MPs in the North-East of Scot­land at­tribute their vic­to­ries in last year’s elec­tion to the party’s com­mit­ment to get­ting Bri­tain out of the Com­mon Fish­eries Pol­icy and will fight any fail­ure to de­liver on tak­ing back con­trol.

Yes­ter­day, the Daily Tele­graph quoted a se­nior EU diplo­mat who said: ‘It is para­mount that the UK gives as­sur­ances on the ac­cess of the Eu­ro­pean fleet to UK wa­ters be­fore the EU can agree to a UK-wide back­stop.’

SFF chief ex­ec­u­tive Ber­tie Arm­strong said: ‘Tak­ing charge of our own rich wa­ters will hap­pen at Brexit. The ab­so­lute key – our back­stop – will be gov­er­nance on UK terms.’

David Duguid, Con­ser­va­tive MP for Banff and Buchan, said: ‘The EU has taken this po­si­tion from the out­set, so this should come as no sur­prise. How­ever, the UK po­si­tion has also been con­sis­tent. We will have con­trol over our own wa­ters – for the first time in more than 40 years.’

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