On Sunday, the UK government announced it has decided to withdraw from the 1964 London Fisheries Convention. EUFA members take note of this decision and encourage calm and reason to prevail in this period of uncertainty for EU and UK fishermen.
In the short term, the UK government’s decision will have no immediate impact on our and our UK colleagues’ activities. The withdrawal process will take 2 years.
Looking at the broader impact of this decision, we firmly believe that this decision should be looked at in the context of the Brexit negotiations. As made clear by Mr. Michel Barnier in his declarations on Sunday 2 July, the London Fisheries Convention was superseded by EU law, hence the Common Fisheries Policy in 1983, when it entered into force.
For EUFA the key issue remains the overall legal framework that will apply to EU-UK relations post Brexit and the specific consequences this new framework will have for fisheries and market access. For the time being, there are many competing interpretations on which laws would apply post Brexit.
Our goal remains to support negotiators in defining a long term post-Brexit agreement that benefits all: the European and the British industry as well the management and sustainability of fishing stocks. A long-term deal that maintains mutual access to traditional fishing grounds, preserves the current distribution of TAC and quotas and provides for a long-term fisheries management framework is our goal.