Two weeks after its introduction, the legislation that will give us the powers to implement an independent fisheries policy has moved a step forward. Lords’ Minister, Lord Gardiner, has led the Second Reading of the Fisheries Bill in the House of Lords today.
The Bill will provide the legal framework to ensure that the UK becomes an independent coastal State outside of the EU, and the Common Fisheries Policy. It will also provide the powers needed to manage our fisheries more responsively and responsibly by including strong measures to protect our seas, as well as a new climate change objective recognising the impact of fishing on the health of the ocean.
Lord Gardiner opened the session with a speech setting out how the Bill will enable the UK to create a sustainable, profitable fishing industry, while securing the long term health of British fisheries.
Lords’ Minister Lord Gardiner said:
The Fisheries Bill gives us the historic opportunity to design our own domestic fishing policy, one that is catered to support our coastal communities best.
We are also fully committed to securing the good health of our marine environment. The Bill includes strong measures to allow the UK to lead the way on sustainable fishing.
Fisheries Minister George Eustice said:
This Bill gives us the powers we need to become an independent coastal state and control who fishes in our waters and under what terms.
Now that we have left the EU there are many opportunities to do things better, to fish sustainably and to get a fair settlement for our fishermen.
The Second Reading of the Fisheries Bill will conclude this evening. The Bill will then go to Committee Stage, with Report Stage and Third Reading following this, before transferring to the House of Commons for further scrutiny.
You can track the progress of the Fisheries Bill and read debates on all stages of the Bill on parliament.uk
Further detail on the Bill is here.