ANGER IN THE FISHING INDUSTRY: ‘Betrayed’ fishermen are demanding answers as the Brexit debate heats up.
MPs have warned that the impact of the Brexit trade deal will “devastate” the fishing industry across the UK, despite the Government’s assertion that “there is a bright future ahead of us.”
MPs said the Scottish fish industry is “drowning in bureaucracy and red tape” and faces a “existential threat” in a Commons debate. Fishing boats from all around the UK have expressed their displeasure with the Brexit trade arrangement with the EU.
In a Commons discussion on the future of fisheries, Deidre Brock, SNP MP for Edinburgh North and Leith, stated fishing had taken “a big skelping.”
As MPs from across the UK repeatedly emphasized the sense of “betrayal” felt by the fishing industry, the MP proceeded to declare the Tories’ promised “sea of opportunity” has “turned to muck.”
“When the business is damaged, it impacts not only the crews on the boats, but also the communities on shore, many of which, definitely in Scotland, are dependent on fishing,” she said.
“Removing the industry will rob those towns of their lifeblood.
“In the 2020s, Scotland’s coastal villages could face the same destruction that Thatcher’s governments inflicted on Scotland’s industrial towns.”
Brexit, according to Brendan O’Hara, SNP MP for Argyll and Bute, is now considered as a “existential threat to the business” due to rising export costs.
He went on to say that the agreement has created “an industry beset by dropping pricing and lost markets, an industry beset by bureaucracy and red tape, and one beset by labor shortages and massive transportation and logistical challenges.”
Fishermen in his constituencies, according to Alistair Carmichael, Liberal Democrat MP for Orkney and Shetland, “feel left down and used, and they want answers.”
He stated that by selling at a discount to the domestic market, one entrepreneur in Shetland was able to reduce a potential £50,000 sales loss to £20,000 – only to be told that this meant “there will be no assistance for him.”
Victoria Prentis, the Conservative fisheries minister, asserted that “we have a bright future ahead of us.”
She acknowledged that the business had had a “very difficult” 18 months, but that specifics on an interim quota-swapping mechanism had been agreed upon with the EU and will be announced next week.
She also claimed that the UK has a “efficient and intelligence-led enforcement framework” for policing its seas. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”