12:34pm Wednesday 20th March 2013 in Letters
EUROPEAN fishing ministers have finally agreed on a deal that will see the EU’s controversial practice on discarding fish come to an end in 2017.
This is a landmark move, and despite objections from Spain and France, this ludicrous practice will be phased out from 2014 onwards – with an outright obligation to land all catches being imposed on all fisheries within the EU from January 2017.
My UKIP colleagues and I have long campaigned over discards and I personally am very pleased by the outcome of these talks. However, while it is a step in the right direction in terms of fisheries management, it comes far too late.
In the UK, we have seen what was once a healthy and buoyant fishing industry more than halved by the Common Fisheries Policy. Fishing fleets have been destroyed, fishing ports left derelict and the carving up of oceans between the 27 member states, landlocked or otherwise, has left our waters dredged of fish.
The reality is, CFP simply does not and cannot work.
To me, repatriation of fishing policy to the member states is truly the only option. I believe that the UK should control and fish her own waters, as should other member states protect and profit from theirs.
JOHN BUFTON UKIP MEP for Wales