New sub-agreement on the Finance Act makes a mockery of fishing claims Danish fishing representatives
New sub-agreement on the Finance Act stops trawling in the Little Belt, Great Belt, Langelands Belt and the Sound
Without prior notice, the Danish government and its support parties have entered into a partial agreement on the Finance Act, which is another disaster for Danish fisheries. A total stop to trawling in the Little Belt, Great Belt, Langelands Belt and the Sound means that the blanket will be pulled away under another number of Danish fishermen.
“This is a scandal. You sit in the Ministry of Finance and negotiate about things that you apparently do not have a good sense of. This means the closure of workplaces and fishing ports and has far-reaching consequences in many local communities. The carpet is torn away under a number of our members, and we are not so much as have been heard along the way. It is an unprecedented perfection of power and a mockery of fishing,” says Svend-Erik Andersen, chairman of the Danish Fisheries Association.
He points out that the agreement comes right on the back of a catastrophic closure of the cod fishery in the Baltic Sea.
“I am shocked by this. I thought the government had burned its fingers abundantly at closing jobs in self-employed private businesses without involving them. But it’s obviously not over yet. This is a new low. If the politicians again and again just make agreements without consulting us, then it is difficult for my members to believe that there is a real will at Christiansborg to preserve Danish fishing, “says Allan Buch, chairman of the Belt Fisheries Association.
He emphasizes that the closure of the belts will have serious consequences for the local areas, where fishing ports will close and activity on land will fall sharply. 90 per cent of the economy in Danish fishing comes from the trawl fishery, which is the backbone of the industry, which also supports the smaller net fishing and ensures that there are, for example, opportunities to land and sell the catches and that e.g. are ice houses in the ports.
He will now enter into dialogue with the government on how to help the fishermen who have to see their business destroyed. The scrapping scheme that politicians have agreed on is not at all commensurate with the need that exists. Already a year and a half ago, the Danish Fisheries Association asked for 75 million for a scrapping scheme. Now 25 million is being made available at the same time as important fisheries are closing.
Svend-Erik Andersen again appeals to cooperation on the fishing situation.
“Fishing provides important jobs and is part of the culture and basis of life in many coastal communities far away from Christiansborg. We are fighting to preserve that. And we actually believe that we can help politicians with many of the solutions that are needed, if only they cooperate with us on it,” says Svend-Erik Andersen.
“Together with the Danish Society for Nature Conservation, we have e.g., shown that you can make large areas with protected seas in Denmark. Let us now work together to provide a better marine environment at the same time as we have a sustainable and profitable fishery. It can actually be done, and no one is more interested in a clean and vibrant sea than the fishermen,” says Svend-Erik Andersen.