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IOM/Scotland Relationship in Tatters over Fishery Rules

Sat, 13 Jan 2018

Fergus Ewing MSP (Pic: Twitter @FergusEwingMSP)
Fergus Ewing MSP (Pic: Twitter @FergusEwingMSP)

The Scottish Fisheries Minister has hit out at the Isle of Man over changes to Fisheries rules in Manx Waters.

A new requirement for non Manx Vessels to call in to a Manx Port to report catch numbers was brought in without any consultation with the Scottish Government.

Scottish Fisheries Minister Fergus Ewing said he was “deeply disappointed and frustrated” that his appeals to the Manx government to drop the plan had fallen on deaf ears. He said that Scotland had put forward a number of alternatives, however the Isle of Man had rejected them.

Mr Ewing described relations as “extremely fraught”, he said the Isle of Man government had failed to share its plans or enter negotiations and he had no option but to trigger a formal dispute resolution process as set out in a Fisheries Management Agreement.

DEFA Minister Geoffrey Boot claims the changes are necessary to conserve fish stocks but last week made a U turn on some of the proposals. Scotland say the revised plans are not good enough.

Conservative MSP for Galloway and West Dumfries, Finlay Carson has also come out fighting in support of Scottish fishermen. The largest ‘Scallop’ Port in the UK, Kirkcudbright, is in Mr Carson’s Constituency.

An Independent Arbiter is likely to make a decision on the scheme.

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