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Un quart des prises françaises en volume provient des eaux britanniques.

Why the situation between France and the United Kingdom over fishing rights is tense

Paris criticizes the British government for allowing fishing in its territorial waters, which is important for French boats, in a tactical way.

Four months after the end of the post-Brexit agreement, the situation between London and Paris has become tense over the issue of French fishermen accessing British waters full of fish. Until this climax, on Thursday morning, more than 50 French fishing boats protested in front of the port of Saint-Helier, the capital of the Anglo-Norman island of Jersey.

The Brexit deal, negotiated at the end of December, offers a transition period until the summer of 2026, when European fishermen will give up 25% of their catches in British waters, equivalent to 50 650 million a year. It provides for annual renegotiation.

So EU fishermen will have guaranteed access to areas 6 to 12 nautical miles off the British coast until the summer of 2026. This area is known to have a lot of fish and most of the sailing is quiet. However, they must apply for new licenses.

AFP told the Director-General of the Jean-Luc Hall National Committee of the National Marine Fisheries and Marine Agriculture (CNPMEM) that conditions for accessing British fishermen to French waters would not change. But that’s only a few ships – cashiers (tank boats) looking for crabs or crabs.

What a mess

The French government and fishermen say they are breaking away from the London Brexit agreement. In order to obtain their license, French ships must prove to British authorities that they are already fishing in the area during the 2012-2016 reference period.

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In principle, large ships have no problem. “Ship tracking system“(VMS),”Types of cookies that record the status of shipsFish, according to Jean-Luc Hall of the National Fisheries Council. But it is more complicated for boats less than 12 meters, for which this geolocation is not mandatory. Another danger: when a ship is recent, having entered the Navy since 2016, it is necessary to prove that the modifying boat sailed on British waters. “benedictine works», Jean-Luke describes Hall.

According to the French Ministry of Maritime, France has so far applied for 88 licenses, of which 163 were for fishermen from the Hots-de-France, and 13 out of 40 for their counterparts in northern Britain. To fish in Jersey, 41 licenses were issued out of 344 requests. As for Paris, these 41 licenses come with new requirements. “Unacceptable.

Mansi Deputy Bertrand Sore (LREM) quoted a fisherman from Cranville as saying that in 2021 Jersey was authorized to go into the waters for only eleven days and to fish for scallops.An average of 40 days per yearTake the wheels off the wheels.

Key access to EU fishermen

A quarter (about 20% of the value) of French catches comes from British waters. According to 2011-2015 figures, the dependency is even stronger for Belgium (50% of its value), Ireland (35%), Denmark (30%) and the Netherlands (28%). Spain, Germany and Sweden are also less affected.

Fish eggs settle on the French coast and as far as Denmark, where they are very shallow and sandy because of the nutritious areas. “As they get older, they move north to slightly deeper, cooler and more oxidized waters.According to the French Research Institute for Marine Exploitation (IFRMER). In British water, then.

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In a statement on Tuesday, the Jersey government promised: “Issued fishing licenses under a trade agreementBr ended between Brussels and London at the end of December. The situation is further complicated by the fact that Brussels and London have not yet agreed to accept a fishing quota for shares to be shared between the EU and the United Kingdom by 2021.

«The British side may have a desire to have some skills at hand“As part of the negotiations on these allocations, the Director General of the National Fisheries Commission, AFP Jean-Luc Hall, was asked to explain the licensing in a tactical way.