Ian Blackford rages at ‘con job’ Brexit deal for ‘seriously screwing up’ Scottish fishing

Brexit: Government has 'screwed up' on fisheries says Blackford

The UK Government’s talk of “taking back control” of British fishing waters has been branded a “con job” by Ian Blackford. The SNP Westminster Leader spoke to LBC’s Andrew Castle about his issues with the completed Brexit trade agreement. Mr Blackford claimed that for certain species in Scotland, the quota catch will actually be less than what is what under the EU.

He explained: “There’s something called the Hague Convention which gives Scottish fishermen additional catch.

“That’s been excluded from this deal, they didn’t even bother to renegotiate it.

“What we’ve done is we’ve gone through the documents the Government has produced for the data per species.

“For example, the catch for North Sea cod is down from 63.5 percent to 57 percent of the total catch.”

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Mr Blackford continued: “The same is true is haddock, the same true for other species as well.

“I hate to put it this way, but they’ve actually seriously screwed up.

“The UK Government has talked about taking back control of the sea, that sea of opportunity for fishermen.

“It’s been a con job because the harsh reality is very, very different.”

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The SNP MP added: “You’ve also got to consider that this is a deal which is in place up until 2026.

“You’re going to go back into these same negotiations again to obtain a longer lasting settlement beyond that period.

“So what has this all been about? Because this idea of taking back control of the seas and the fish hasn’t come about.”

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Under the terms of the deal, EU fishing fleets will have their access to UK waters reduced by 25 percent.

However it will only happen gradually over a transition period of five and half years, after which quotas will be decided by annual negotiations.

The deal will also increase British fishermen’s share of fishing rights in UK waters from about a half to two-thirds.

MPs will be voting on the new agreement tomorrow.

The SNP have already stated their intentions to vote against the Government.

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