Brexit: Mummery says UK will have 'finest fisheries' worldwide
The UK agreed to a 25 percent cut in the share of fish European Union vessels will be allowed to catch in British waters after Brexit, finally putting an end to the negotiations. But even before the deal was struck, former British MEP and fisheries campaigner June Mummery already predicted Britain will make a success of the new arrangements to resume its leadership position in the global fishing industry. Speaking to Express.co.uk, Ms Mummery said: “We’ve now got to work with regional groups to bring the price of fish down, get more into the supermarkets, get more fishmongers’ open.
“Back in the day, a town used to be full of UK fish markets. It’s a food source, a very good food source.
“I have no doubt in my mind, with a strong, honest Government and true grit, the UK will be the most sustainable, finest fisheries in the world.”
Ms Mummery, who was elected in the European Parliament with the Brexit Party in 2019, insisted regaining control of fishing waters will allow the UK to rejuvenate the hailing industry and create jobs in communities where unemployment rocketed in recent years.
She continued: “The big advantage of an industry like fishing is the knock-on businesses that you get.
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“I often point out one job at sea is eight on land. You have these knock-on businesses like processing.
“We’re going to need a lot of boats built and with building ships, you get all types of jobs created. Welders, platers, engineers, joiners, electricians, painters.
“And then you have fish anglers, we will be bringing back fishmongers because we know supermarkets have taken off their fish counters.”
Despite a deal having been agreed to reduce access rights EU vessels have, fishermen have accused Boris Johnson of a “great fisheries sell-out”.
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Former Brexit Party MEP Martin Daubney said: ” “The Great Fisheries Sell-Out: the Brexit Deal guarantees the EU 5 1/2 years continued access to British waters. So 4 1/2 years from Brexit that is a total of a decade of EU vessels plundering our waters.
“This will be a bitter disappointment for our fishermen.”
Campaigners from the group Fishing for Leave have also warned the final agreement struck with the EU does “not look good on fishing.”
In a statement released after the deal was finalised on December 24, the group said: “Sadly, from what’s emerging, the trade deal treaty is far from a clean break to international normality/law.
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“It looks like what has been agreed is a protracted process. One which will end close to the status quo. With Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen crowing that the EU has secured “strong tools to incentivise” the UK to carry on offering EU boats access to UK waters post 2026.
“This sounds grim, and that the government has acceded to a ‘Fishing Backstop’ that the EU sought to impose. Whereby the EU can retaliate with tariffs on goods should the UK seek to move to a position akin to the other Nordic nations after the 5.5 year period.
“Essentially this would see us stuck like a broken record, with continued equal access for the EU to our waters, and on quota shares where the UK wins back just a bit more fish to save some political face.”
MPs have been scrutinising the deal for over a week and will be voting on the agreement on December 30.
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