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Fishermen 'disappointed' with EU transition negotiations

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Members of the fishing industry across East Anglia and the United Kingdom have expressed 'disappointment' at a deal struck in Brussels for the UK to remain under European Union (EU) fishing quotas until 2021.

During the UK's transitional period with the EU, British Fishermen will remain governed by the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP). The CFP is a set of rules for managing European fishing fleets and for conserving fish stocks.

Designed to manage a common resource, it was set up in the 1970s to give all European fishing fleets equal access to EU waters and fishing grounds and allows fishermen to compete fairly. However according to British fishermen this is not the case and they have been lobbying to withdrawal.

Fishing quotas are set in annual negotiations in December which means once the UK has left the EU on March 29th 2019 it will need to negotiate as an independent state. Fishermen wanted the UK to regain full control over the country's fishing waters on Brexit day.  

In response, Waveney MP Peter Aldous said while it was positive that it seemed clear the UK would leave the CFP after 2020, it was disappointing that the current system would remain in place in the interim.

Many port towns up at down the coast of East Anglia flourished as the result booms in the fishing industry. Since its decline, towns have looked to establish themselves as centres of offshore energy, including oil, gas and offshore wind. With the recent Brexit transition deal in place, many have concerns over the future of the fishing industry.

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