Brexit deal ‘demands’ future ‘compromise’ on fishing says expert
Former Brexit Party MEP Ben Habib argued Remainers were using Brexit as the key reason the fishing industry was struggling in 2021. During a video broadcast with Brexit Unlocked, Mr Habib highlighted, what he believes to be, the real reason the UK fishing is not thriving. He insisted “Remoaners” were ignoring the fact that fish is in lower demand due to the coronavirus pandemic.
He added a key contributing factor was the flaws of Boris Johnson Brexit deal.
He insisted the deal allowed great access to EU boats while not guaranteeing British fishermen they would have easy access to the European fishing market.
Mr Habib said: “I’m doing a short video this afternoon just to disabuse Remainers, or should I call them Remoaners, who have put it about that the plight of the fishing industry, at the moment, is as a result of Brexit.
“Well, it isn’t. The primary reason the fishing industry is suffering is because there is a pandemic on, in case they hadn’t noticed.
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“Restaurants in the United Kingdom and across Europe are closed so there’s a dirt of demand for fish right across Europe.
“But there’s another reason, and that’s because the deal the Prime Minister did has effectively given unfettered access to European Union fishing boats all the way down to the six-mile limit in the United Kingdom waters.
“They can come into our waters, fish to their hearts’ delight and take back whatever they like to Europe to use in their restaurants and their homes.”
Mr Habib also highlighted how Boris Johnson’s deal would negatively impact fishermen trying to sell their fish as well.
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He said: “The EU doesn’t need British fishing right now because they can come and take it but what’s worse is that our own fish, caught by our own fishermen cannot be exported easily to Europe because there is a hell of a lot of bureaucracy as part of the deal.
“You would’ve thought that if the Prime Minister was going to give them unfettered access to come into our waters and take our fish, he might give us, or at least assure us, unfettered access to their markets.
“Sadly, it hasn’t worked that way. So this has nothing to do with Brexit.
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“It has to do with the pandemic, a collapse in demand for fish and a Prime Minister who simply sold the fishing industry down the drain.”
Mr Habib has repeatedly warned the EU will hope to take advantage of the UK in the fishing transition period.
He has insisted that Boris Johnson will need to eventually back out of the agreement with the EU over fishing.
Instead, he claimed the UK should be investing billions into the fishing industry and its communities to ensure the UK does not need to rely on the EU for success.
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