FFL Blasts Misinformation on the London Convention.
Despite FFL detailing this convention there’s a huge level of false information on the ramifications of this Convention. The response of the EU and the media being deliberately misleading.
The government will now finally withdraw from the London Fisheries Convention 1964 to secure access within British waters inside 12 miles after months of prevarication.
Fishing for Leave first highlighted and detailed the significance of this forgotten convention on the 14th of October http://ffl.org.uk/brexit-backtrack-with-historic-rights/
After the identifying the worrying development in Government and Whitehall that this Convention was being touted as a reason to allow continued EU access to avoid being confrontational with the EU.
After a 6month campaign to highlight the danger and galvanise the tremendous support of members, industry, public, Brexit groups, media, MPs and Peers to see it scrapped we’re delighted to have helped this small but symbolic victory for the industry.
However it is infuriating at the level of false information being used as deliberate reframing to manipulate and misrepresent the issue –
1) We catch 100,000tons in their waters but they only catch 10,000tons in our 6-12 – the media should be ashamed of this blatant manipulation of statistics.It is ALL EU waters, not just the 6-12 mile strip, that the UK fleet catches 100,000tons in. The EU catches 674,000 tons in British waters. The EU catches 54% of its catches in UK waters representing 60% of Britain’s fish! 7times more than we get back from theirs!!
2) The CFP transcends and supersedes the Convention- The EU is filibustering that scrapping this convention means nothing and the CFP rules all.
This is deliberate distortion to try to say they are in command – they are not. The EU adopted and used the rights of the Convention into Regulation 2141/70 as the basis of historical rights within the CFP. Consequently, the CFP doesn’t supersede but sits alongside this convention. When the CFP ceases to apply so too will the rights to 6-12 it adopted. As Britain will revert to legislation that pre-dates EU membership access through the London Convention would have continued. Now that it will be scrapped we have got rid of any EU access to British waters between 6-12 miles.
3) Convention has nothing to do with the EU/Brexit – Although not EU law the significance is the Convention predates Britain’s EU membership. Consequently, although the CFP will/should “cease to apply” on withdrawal as per the conditions of Article 50, Section3, the convention would not. Keeping the convention would leave back door access to a small strip between 6 and 12 miles hence the vital necessity of scrapping this convention.
4) This is an insignificant move and publicity stunt that changes nothing – Nothing will change until the 2year notification period and Britain’s participation in the convention elapses. For 2 years nothing operational has changed but significantly it has pushed government in the direction of having a more strident approach. Its only 12 miles and now we must have our full 200mille EEZ back!
5) Weakens Conservation and Sustainable Fishing – Expulsion of EU boats from UK waters will Reduce fishing pressure. Britain will be able to enact policy, management and terms of access far better than the disastrous CFP. International co-operation can continue as neighbours not bed fellows. Accusing Britain that acting as Norway, Iceland and Faroe do jeopardizes sustainability is nonsense. The EU acts as a country, in exercising fisheries management and access rights on behalf of the member states….. we are not leaving some fuzzy global club for all nations!
It’s extremely disappointing that groups and individuals who say their sole interest is sustainable fisheries are deriding Britain re-establishing her sovereign rights, which will actually REDUCE fishing effort and hopefully see the UK enact new bespoke policy rather than continue with the dysfunctional CFP.
We ask in what interest are these groups and individuals acting, for sustainable fisheries or the ideology of EU policy?
We congratulate Fisheries Minister George Eustice for his public defence of the withdrawal from the convention and his refuting of deliberately misrepresented statistics and the accusations of imperilling sustainability.
We are glad to hear him again assert the UK will take back our entire 200 EEZ and in doing so pushing the whole government to do so.
We hope for an unequivocal backing by the Prime Minister and government of what the minister has said after the deliberate choice of manifesto wording that could only mean Britain would take back out to 12 miles not the entire 200 EEZ as the minister has continually stated.