Norway has announced the redistribution of third country fishing quotas and compensation for lost fishing areas in the UK zone
On Friday night, 28 May, the Norwegian Ministry of Trade and Industry announced information on the redistribution of third country quotas as compensation for lost fishing areas in the British zone.
The redistribution is largely in line with the recommendations from Fiskarlaget.
After Norway ended negotiations with the United Kingdom without a fisheries agreement for 2021, the Minister of Fisheries and Seafood on Friday decided that 6,250 tonnes of cod and 3,000 tonnes of haddock will be set aside from the so-called third country quota as compensation for the conventional sea fleet group has a quota agreement with the UK for 2021.
The conventional sea fleet group has been fishing in these areas for generations, but can now not conduct their traditional fishing for ling and tusk with line around Shetland and further west.
“After thorough assessments, I have come to the conclusion that this group is particularly affected by the fact that from a normal state that has lasted a very long time, to zero overnight by not only losing access, but also quotas,” says Minister of Fisheries and Seafood Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen in the press releases.
“I want to emphasize that there are many groups that are affected by Brexit, and who do not get exchange quotas or access in the British zone. And as it is not relevant to provide any compensation. Especially those who have lost access must now try to adjust the fishing pattern. Then I hope that we will also in the future enter into agreements with the UK that include quota exchange,” says Ingebrigtsen.
Facts about the decisions
Fishing for ling/tusk and other species has been part of the quota agreement with the EU, where Norway has paid with cod in the Barents Sea to the EU in exchange for fishing opportunities for Norwegian fishermen in EU waters. This was done to continue fishing to those who traditionally fished in Norwegian or EU waters when the economic zones were established.
The traditional fishing grounds for ling/tusk are now in British waters and no quota agreement was entered into with the United Kingdom for 2021, and this fleet will therefore not have access to such quotas this year.
Against this background, the Ministry has decided that the group will be compensated with some of the third country quota of cod that is unused. Included in this will be four coastal vessels over 28 metres with participation rights in fishing for ling and tusk.
The Minister of Fisheries and Seafood has asked the Directorate of Fisheries to increase the guaranteed over-regulation for closed groups under 11 meters to create predictability for the smallest fleet.
The maximum quota supplement for fishing for cod in the open group is increased to 6 tonnes per vessel. The fresh fish scheme will not be increased due to the ongoing work on coastal cod protection, where, among other things, the fresh fish scheme is being considered. The changes will take effect from Monday 31 May 2021.
The Norwegian Fishermen’s Association considered the matter in the National Board on 11 May.
The Minister has given somewhat more cod than the board’s recommendation and otherwise incorporated the four coastal vessels over 28 metres mentioned in the case – in line with the Fishermen’s Association’s recommendation.
The same applies to the recommendations on other distribution in line with the distribution keys.