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Support for Fisheries

Volume 660: debated on Thursday 16 May 2019

18. What discussions he has had with Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on support for the fisheries sector after the UK leaves the EU. (910938)

We continue to work closely with the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on supporting our fishing industry. The Government’s vision for a sustainable and profitable fishing sector was set out in the fisheries White Paper in July 2018. As an independent coastal state, we will control access to UK waters and pursue a fairer share of fishing opportunities for the benefit of fishermen in Banff and Buchan and across the UK.

I thank my hon. Friend for his response. Will he confirm that, whatever form the withdrawal agreement takes, we will leave the common fisheries policy, as he just said, and take part in annual negotiations as an independent coastal state no later than December 2020?

My hon. Friend is right. He continues to be a passionate and persistent champion of the fishing industry in his constituency. The best way to ensure our taking part in those negotiations by December 2020 is to vote for the withdrawal agreement, as he and I have done, to secure those rights, and not to try to trap us in the common fisheries policy as the SNP has done.