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Scottish Independence and Scotland's Future
Scottish Innovation Party (SIP) Fishing


The EU has destroyed over a hundred thousand jobs in our fishing industry, ripping the guts out of local communities from the Cornish coast to the Scottish islands. Today, fishermen from all over the country have brought dozens of boats to the Thames to show their support for #Brexit and protest the European Common Fisheries Policy.

The Business of Fishing

The Business of Fishing' aims to improve everyone's understanding of the business aspects of the UK fishing industry by showing some of the day-to-day and strategic challenges that fishing vessel owners face and how they overcome those challenges. The video shows the industry through the eyes of four different vessel owners from different fishing sectors and regions of the UK. The focus is on running a successful business while taking care of the fish stocks and the natural environment.

'The Business of Fishing' was screened for the first time at an event at the Mayfair Hotel in London on Tuesday 12 March 2013. At the screening event, the invited audience of policy makers, environmental NGOs, media and industry representatives each had the opportunity to meet vessel owners involved in the film and discuss some of the issues that it explored. A further launch event was held in Edinburgh the following week and several other screenings around the UK and in Brussels followed as popular demand grew. The film has been shown at a discussion event in the European Parliament and to DG Mare at the European Commission in Brussels, to the House of Commons all party fisheries committee in London.

Sea Fisheries and End Year Negotiations - Scottish Parliament:
7th December 2016

Trawlermen Season 1 Episode 1

Trawlermen Season 1 Episode 2

Trawlermen Season 1 Episode 3

Trawlermen Season 1 Episode 4

Trawlermen Season 1 Episode 5

Note: Another 2 seasons are available on YouTube

Slippery Salmon: life on a salmon farm

Scottish Fishermen’s Federation
Representing Scotland’s Fishermen. The Scottish Fishermen’s Federation (SFF) was formed in 1973 to preserve and promote the collective interests of Scotland’s fishermen’s associations.

Our Fishing Heritage
By David Thomson.
The following are selected chapters from a new book by a former Lossie fisherman. They recount the town’s fishing heritage from the 19th century and detail its fleet’s rise to prosperity and its subsequent demise under the European Union’s Common Fisheries Policy. In particular chapter 1 will demonstrate how a fishing community has been devastated by EU mismanagement.

Fishing for Leave
Fishing for Leave is an independent campaign set up by people in the fishing industry for the fishing industry.

SFF lays out Brexit fishing requirements to Commons Select Committee on Brexit

At an evidence session of the Commons Brexit Select Committee today (19 December) at Aberdeen University, Bertie Armstrong from the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation and Michael Bates from the Scottish Seafood Association together laid out the considerable prize that Brexit will bring for sustainable food production and the revitalisation of coastal communities.

The principal points made in response to questioning were:

A return to the normal condition, under International Law, of beneficial stewardship of the seafood resource in the extensive and very rich Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) surrounding our nation. Presently, 58% of the fish and shellfish caught in our EEZ are taken by non-UK EU boats. As explained to the committee, this is far from normal when compared with Coastal States such as Norway. Rebalancing this would simply be a return to normality that would produce real increases in economic activity for both catching and the shore-side processing sector and beyond.

Regarding access to the EU single market – the proven ability of the industry to secure new markets was explained to the committee, using the example of market loss and replacement when EU sanctions were applied to Russia. Change will present challenges, for sure, but also opportunities. The possibility of tariffs shouldn’t terrify – the average WTO seafood tariff is 5 – 10%, whereas we have seen currency fluctuations of up to 20% to our exporting advantage over the last six months.

“We need access to other EU members’ waters”. This myth was laid to rest at the committee meeting. We do not need such access as we catch only around 15% of our fish elsewhere. In any case, mutual access can be negotiated, but only on beneficial terms to our nation, as is the case with other Coastal States such as Norway, Iceland and the Faroes.

“Fish know no boundaries”. Myth number two was laid to rest at the committee meeting. Fish have no idea about geo-political boundaries, but do know all about biological and ecological ones. That’s why other EU Member States want access to our waters; that’s where the fish are.

EU manpower – this was particularly relevant to the processing sector and both industry representatives recognised the challenge but made it clear that increased opportunity will mean increased security. It is a challenge that can be met.

In a joint statement after the select committee meeting, Bertie Armstrong and Michael Bates said: “The point most strongly made was that the seafood in our EEZ is a fundamental natural resource which, unlike oil, gas and coal is a wholly renewable resource if looked after. It will still be there in 500 years’ time and is therefore something permanent that should not to be traded away for short-term expediency.

“Markets and manpower are challenges to be met, not stoppers. Give us the increased raw material and we will deliver the rest.”

After Brexit we could fish like Iceland – but is there a catch?
Written by Alan Hastings October 20th, 2017


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