Brexit: Scottish fisherman slams EU ‘red-tape’ for exports
Former Cabinet Minister John Redwood has told the Prime Minister the fishing industry deserves better than the current arrangements with Brussels. Red tape implemented as part of the EU trade deal means there have been long delays to exports of fish to the continent.
French fishmongers and seafood factories have now started to look elsewhere for where to order their supplies from due to the delays of stock from the UK.
Wokingham MP John Redwood, who is a veteran eurosceptic and a Cabinet Minister in Sir John Major’s Government, has demanded Boris Johnson take action to help those fisheries being penalised.
He said: “Time for the Government to sort out the fishing issues.
“The industry expects a better deal.
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“There’s plenty the Government can do to improve things.”
On Wednesday, Mr Johnson said he understood the “temporary frustration” felt by fisheries impacted by the change in trading terms.
In front of a committee of MPs, the Prime Minister vowed compensation for this affected.
His spokesman confirmed yesterday: “We have said that we are looking to compensate the fishing industry given that they faced temporary issues and we accept that this may have been through no fault of their own.
“We are working with the fishing industry on this, to alleviate and compensate them for some of the short-term issues they have faced.”
Arnaud Mille, head of sourcing at Demarne Freres, who relies on Britain for his supplies, said: “We’ve never known such delays.
“It’s been apocalyptic.”
Much of the fishing industry relies on quick exports in order for the produce to be sold while still fresh.
In one example of how bureaucracy was causing an issue for the industry, one Welsh exporter saw her delivery of £50,000 worth of shellfish delayed for 30 hours.
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It was stuck in Portsmouth for 24 hours before facing another seven-hour delay ad French customs due to a paperwork mistake.
Nerys Edwards, whose family owns the exporting firm, told the BBC: “I can’t do this again next week.
“I need a break.
“But I can’t leave the fishermen without incomes for long.”
In another case a consignment of English-caught crab that arrived at a warehouse in France a day late on Saturday, 20 percent of the crustaceans had perished.
Yesterday House of Commons Leader Jacob Rees-Mogg played down the issues being faced by fisheries.
He said: “The key thing is we’ve got our fish back.
“They’re now British fish and they’re better and happier fish for it.”
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