The DFA claims that their industrial fishery sector has been hammered by the outcome of Brexit agreement
The Danish Fisheries Association claims that the industrial fisheries sector has been hammered by the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement and the new fisheries agreement between the two blocks.
On their website they write:
Finally, an agreement was reached which ensures certainty about the fishing quotas in 2021. Unfortunately, the Danish fishery for sandeel and sprat pays an unnecessarily and unreasonably high price.
In early June, the EU and the UK announced that an agreement on this year’s fisheries has fallen into place. And now the important details of the sizes of the quotas and the conditions for fishing have also been published. Although it is good news that the first agreement since Brexit finally came into the house, it is clear that Brexit has really left its mark on Danish fisheries.
Fishing opportunities have diminished, especially in industrial fishing. The British have been pushing to limit industrial fishing, in which they do not have major interests, but which in turn is crucial for the EU and Denmark, as the industrial species secure important jobs in both North and West Jutland – and now the quotas for sandeel and sprat have the agreement got a notch in the spout.
“It is positive that there is now an agreement in place between the EU and the UK. Negotiations have lasted far too long, with fishermen not knowing how to plan their fishing, but now we have certainty. Unfortunately, certainty comes with a price, and it pays for industrial fishing to an unnecessarily high degree. We know that the European Union has fought hard for an agreement, but here it should have been tougher on the British. With the Brexit agreement, Danish fishermen pay in expensive judgments for access to British waters with fishing quotas to an estimated value of 1.2 billion. DKK, so it is not fair that the British then limit our industrial fishing,” says chairman of the Danish Fisheries Association, Svend-Erik Andersen.
If you look at the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) recommendations for fishing quotas, the quotas for sandeel and Norway pout, which the EU and Denmark have access to fishing in British waters, could have been set higher.
“The quotas are set lower than there is room for in the biological advice – you could easily fish more sandeel and sprat without compromising on sustainability. It is a shame that they have not followed the biological advice,” says the chairman.
In addition to industrial fishing, the new agreement sets fishing quotas for a number of consumer fish in the North Sea. Agreements have also been reached to establish by-catch quotas for a number of species – so-called choke species – which could otherwise have restricted other fisheries and forced the fleet to stand still. So there are also good beats that pave the way for fishing, and this hopefully also applies to 2022. Due. Brexit has been extremely uncertain in 2021, and the same uncertainty must not arise again in 2022. The EU and the UK should therefore already be preparing for next year’s negotiations.
“It is gratifying that the agreement just concluded states that the parties will work together to find common ground on quotas for 2022 as soon as the biological advice is available. And there is agreement that final quotas for 2022 must be reached by 10 December this year. We will therefore hopefully not end up in the same situation as this year, and the fishermen will have a better opportunity to plan their fishing for 2022,” says Svend-Erik Andersen:
“Brexit has been and is extremely turbulent for Danish fisheries. Now we need peace and time to look ahead, so we can continue to have a strong and sustainable Danish fishery.”