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Fish Stocks

Volume 406: debated on Wednesday 4 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent assessment has been made of the (a) size and (b) future of fish stocks in UK waters; which European countries have permission to have fishing fleets in UK waters; and what recent discussions she has had with representatives from these countries regarding conserving fish supply. [115155]

The International Council for Exploration of the Sea's Advisory Committee on Fisheries Management produces advice every year on the state of a range of fish stocks in EU waters and the waters of third countries, as well as international waters. The most recent advice was produced last October.France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Ireland and Germany have limited access to fish in UK waters in the six to 12 mile zone, in line with their historic rights. The Faroe Islands and Norway also have access to certain UK waters under the terms of the bilateral fisheries agreements with the EU.I regularly speak to these and other EU member states, and last did so at the Agriculture and Fisheries Council on 26 May 2003.