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Fisheries

Volume 461: debated on Thursday 14 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which quota swaps he has made to support the inshore under-10 metre fleet in each month since January 2005. (142305)

Fisheries Administrations regularly undertake quota swaps to support the diverse needs of our inshore fleet. The following table sets out details of the numbers of quota swaps undertaken on their behalf by Fisheries Administrations since January 2005. The monthly breakdown relates to the month the swaps were attributed to the 10 metre and under allocation:

March

April

May

June

July

August

September

October

November

December

End year swaps

Total

2005

Tonnes gained

137

37

136

338

172

343

135

171

134

47

1,650

Number of swaps

15

3

5

25

7

18

9

11

3

9

105

2006

Tonnes gained

10

741

258

163

64

194

165

85

78

134

144

2,036

Number of swaps

1

13

16

17

4

14

18

7

10

18

23

141

2007

Tonnes gained

700

117

112

829

Number of swaps

19

16

12

37

1 Completed as of 12 June 2007.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions he has had with his (a) Scottish, (b) Welsh and (c) Northern Ireland counterparts on the Marine Bill since May 2007; and if he will make a statement. (142307)

DEFRA Ministers will meet Ministers from the new administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to discuss a range of issues, including the Marine Bill, in the week commencing 18 June.

As with the previous administrations, there will continue to be regular contact on the Marine Bill between DEFRA and the devolved administrations. I am committed to working with the devolved administrations to bring a joined-up approach, through the Marine Bill proposals, to the delivery of our shared vision for clean, healthy, safe, productive and biologically diverse oceans and seas.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he intends to discuss the quota situation for the inshore under 10 metre fleet with his European counterparts at the forthcoming Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting. (142315)

No. The arrangements for allocating quota to inshore and other vessels are a matter for individual member states. In the UK the management of the inshore fleet, including these vessels' access to quota, is being considered in the context of the current quota management change programme, with a view to public consultation later this year.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what consideration he has given to instituting a days at sea formula for the inshore under 10 metre fleet fishing inside the 12 mile limit. (142546)

The issue of the application of days at sea limits to under 10 metre vessels has already been considered in the context of the cod recovery plan. The conclusion at Community level was that this was not appropriate, since the large number of these vessels in the UK and other fleets made both the administration and enforcement of the controls potentially extremely difficult and resource intensive. We were supportive of this line and remain so.