A deal for Wales’ fishing industry has been secured that will safeguard Welsh fish stocks, according to Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Planning and Rural Affairs Lesley Griffiths.
As part of the UK Ministerial negotiating team, the Welsh Government helped secure the deal at the EU Fisheries Council in Brussels which concluded in the early hours of this morning.
The Welsh Government secured deals to:
- avoid needless discards of sea bass and protect the interests of commercial and recreational fishers
- increase quotas for cod and plaice in the Irish sea, sole and cod in the Bristol channel while still meeting sustainability targets
- substantial increase quota for skates and rays.
The Cabinet Secretary said:
“I would like to thank the commercial fishers and recreational angling representatives who have helped identify the key issues around sea bass and other key stocks in Wales. As a result, we were able to present a robust Welsh case to the Presidency and Commission, along with colleagues from the UK Government and other Devolved Administrations.
“We are committed to ensuring our natural resources are sustainably managed. This meaningful deal goes a long way to achieving that goal by securing a positive outcome for coastal communities whose economies and livelihoods depend so much on the sea while protecting our precious marine environment.
“As a Government, we are committed to the key principles of the Common Fisheries Policy and this week’s negotiations underline the importance of following sound science and evidence.
“Securing the right balance in the negotiations is always challenging. This deal strikes the right balance between protecting the economic interests of small-scale fishers and recreational anglers with the need to move stocks toward the position where they can be fished sustainably into the future."