Published On: Tue, Sep 24th, 2019

Brexit: Fishing boss names dire consequences for EU if they fish illegally in UK seas | UK | News

Barrie Deas, the CEO of the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations, spoke to the consequences EU fleets would face if they tried to fish in UK water illegally. According to the Yellowhammer report, up to ‘282 EU and EEA fishing vessels’ could be in UK waters illegally, on day one of no-deal Brexit. Yellowhammer is a Government document outlining ‘worst-case scenarios’ for a no deal Brexit.

The six-page report makes clear the government’s fears that it could lead to ‘clashes between fishing vessels’.

Mr Deas was much more optimistic in his assessment, assuring that the legal ramifications for EU fleets could be severe.

He confirmed: “There will be a fisheries agreement between the EU and the UK.

“If any EU vessels fish illegally in UK waters, because that’s what it would be.”

READ MORE: Fishing boss says in no deal, UK would ‘automatically become independe

He said: “Or, indeed, the other way around. If UK vessels fished in EU waters.

“They would be fishing illegally under EU law as well as UK law.

“And the consequences could be quite severe.

“What there will be under a fisheries agreement is a list of vessels permitted to fish in UK waters.”

IUU stands for Illegal Unregulated Unreported fishing.

Mr Deas said: “So I think the physical infrastructure, how many vessels we have to physically stop vessels fishing illegally is one issue.

“But the other side would need to think very carefully about whether they’re jeopardising their future by fishing illegally in UK waters.”

“So I think that’s a dimension of the picture that needs to be understood.

“The eligibility to fish in UK waters will lie with the UK.”

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