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UK fishermen could recover £400 million of fish caught by EU vessels

Staff Writer |
Some 58% of the fish and shellfish landed from the UK’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) were caught by other EU countries.

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This equates to around 650,000 tons of fish and shellfish, worth more than £400 million each year.

In contrast, UK fishing boats fishing elsewhere in EU waters, landed on average 90,000 tons of fish and shellfish, worth about £100 million.

Non-UK EU boats caught seven times more fish in UK waters than UK boats caught in the waters surrounding other EU countries.

Half of all the demersal fish and two thirds of the pelagic fish caught in our fishing waters were caught by boats from EU countries other than the UK.

More than three-quarters of the sole, hake and herring, and more than half of the megrim, plaice and saithe caught in British waters was taken by other European fishing boats.

However, exit from the EU will enable the UK to assert control over its 200-mile EEZ, which means that foreign vessels could not then fish in the zone without express consent.

Bertie Armstrong, chief executive of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation, said: "This detailed analysis of these landing figures is a bombshell that reveals the truly shocking extent of how our rich fishing grounds have been given away in recent decades."

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