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23 February 2018

MSP Thanked for Work on Sea of Opportunity by Fishing Sector

Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has been thanked by the Scottish Fisherman’s Federation (SFF) for his work on the Sea of Opportunity.

The comments were made by Executive Officer Simon Collins during the Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee.

Mr Stevenson, a member of the committee, wanted to discuss with representatives from the SFF their views on the Common Fisheries Policy.

He wanted to discuss issues around quota and how it might work during the transition as the UK leaves the European Union.

He said he wanted to know what process would be in place for coming out of the CFP to manage the move afterwards for the catching sector to be at a starting position of 100% of the quota being owned and controlled by Scotland.

Responding to him, Mr Collins said:

“I am glad that Stewart Stevenson is here, because he was one of the first people who came forward with a debate in the Scottish Parliament on the sea of opportunity.

“He was the first to recognise the opportunities for that part of the catching sector.”

Representatives from both the catching and creel sector were in Parliament to put forward their views on the future of fishing post Brexit and during the transition period.

Mr Collins said control of UK waters once more would mean the industry was in a “strong position” to demand if any fleets required access that they should be “prepared to give up” some of their quota.

Commenting, Stewart Stevenson said:

“Since my first day as a Parliamentarian I have made it clear that we should have control of our waters and that the CFP was not fair for the fishing industry in Scotland.

“I am pleased to see that the SFF has a determined and attitude and clear outlook on what it wants to achieve from negotiations in the year ahead.

“It is crucial we retain control of our waters once more and I look forward to continued negotiation and discussion on this matter.”

Stewart Stevenson
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