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21 May 2010

Stevenson Welcomes Funding For Scottish Fishing Fleet

Banff & Buchan MSP Stewart Stevenson has welcomed the announcement that the Scottish Government is set to provide an additional £6 million to support the Fisheries Action Plan. On top of this, match funding from the European Fisheries Fund could deliver substantial additional investment into the industry this year.

The SNP Government has also called for Scottish boats involved in catch quota trials to be made exempt from the EU’s days at sea regime, while a new scheme to allow two businesses to transfer their days at sea to a single vessel in order to reduce costs will be introduced next month.

Commenting, Mr Stevenson said:

“In these difficult economic times, this funding announcement will be welcome news for Banff & Buchan’s fishing industry. Finding ways to make the fishing industry both more profitable and more sustainable are at the core of the Fisheries Action Plan and this announcement will help to build upon the progress that has already been made.

“The fishing industry in Scotland is showing the way to the rest of Europe when it comes to conservation and developing new sustainable fishing practices. This substantial funding that has been announced will help enable the industry to go further and continue to adopt pioneering new methods and technologies.

“The further changes that the Scottish Government is seeking to make are aimed at improving the lot of the fishing industry within the discredited CFP, but of course the best move of all would be for control of fisheries to return from Europe to a regional level. The SNP Government has consistently been pressing for this to be at the core of coming CFP reforms, and the new UK Government must do so too for the future of the industry.”

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