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Fisheries: Protection

Volume 464: debated on Tuesday 16 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the answer of 3 September 2007, Official Report, column 1800W, on fisheries: protection, what factors were taken into account in deciding to reduce the number of patrol days per year; and what the basis was for the assessment that the operational needs could be delivered through fewer days. (157564)

The key factors that were taken into account were the cost of the provision of the service to the Marine and Fisheries Agency, the available budget and future operational needs. The 700 patrol days for 2008-09 will be delivered by the River Class Patrol Vessels. These vessels are purpose built and more effective and efficient for the equivalent time at sea than the Hunt Class vessels, which provide some of the current patrol time.