Government response

Myth bust: The Express claims that British sovereignty of the seabed is under threat

Amendment of the Common Fisheries Policy would not change the sovereignty of our sea bed or give the EU new powers.

The Myth: The Daily Express has reported that one of the amendments being debated by the European Parliament on the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy would allow the EU to seize control of Britain’s seabed. The piece claimed that critics have said that if passed the amendment could lead to the EU claiming rights to minerals such as oil and gas.

The Truth: This is not true. Even if agreed by the European Parliament, this amendment would not change the sovereignty of our sea bed or give the EU new powers. The proposed amendment would have no practical effect, nor would it have any bearing on mineral extraction. The reform of the Common Fisheries Policy is intended to stop overfishing, boost fish stocks and improve the health of our seas. The UK does not support this amendment as it will not help to tackle the fundamental failings of the Common Fisheries Policy.

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