Fisheries Minister, Richard Benyon, today joined Richard Lochhead and Michelle O’Neill to meet EU Fisheries Commissioner, Maria Damanaki, ahead of crucial annual fisheries negotiations.
Discussions took place to look at the UK priorities for next year’s fish quotas and the urgent need to avoid potentially drastic cuts - under a recovery plan for cod stocks - to the amount of time fishermen can spend at sea.
UK Fisheries Minister, Richard Benyon, said:
“Today’s discussions with the Commission on the impact of fair control measures and the continued effect cod recovery will have on fishing fleets in the UK were very positive.
“We will be coming forward with ideas that will resolve this unsatisfactory situation. We believe that the Commission’s proposals are unjustified given that UK vessels already undertake conservation measures that are recognised internationally.
“As Ministers we remain determined to resolve this matter over the coming weeks.”
Discussions will continue at the Fisheries Council on 15 and 16 December.