Exiting the Common Fisheries Policy is one battle won, but the war for the return of Britain’s fisheries is far from over

Published Jul 03, 2017

UKIP fisheries spokesman, Mike Hookem MEP, has hailed the announcement that the UK is to leave the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) as “brilliant”, but warned against complacency in thinking the "job is done.”

Mr Hookem spoke out following the release of a briefing note that acknowledged the UK’s withdrawal from the CFP for the first time.

Speaking from Strasbourg where he is attending the European Parliament, Mr Hookem said, “For decades the CFP has been a thorn in the side of the fishing community and has heralded a vast decline in both the industry and coastal communities. Therefore, it is great news that the Government has decided to withdraw the UK from the CFP and govern our fishing grounds under the UN’s UNCLOS conventions.”

“Forcing the UK’s withdrawal from the CFP is one more milestone in allowing our fishing industry to rebuild, but it could never have happened without vast amounts of support from the fishing communities of Britain. Together with groups like Save our Fish and Fishing for Leave; and of course, political pressure from UKIP, who have been the only political party campaigning on this issue for years, we have now seen a serious change in the direction of the UK’s fisheries policy.

“However, this announcement must not be taken for more than it is, as the UK’s withdrawal from the CFP in no way means the battle is won. Withdrawing from the CFP only means that the Government now has the right to barter away our fishing industry in exchange for other concessions in the Brexit negotiations, should they choose to do so.

“Therefore, all those who support the UK’s exit from the CFP still need to work hard to ensure that Brexit means exit and that our waters, our fish and our natural resources are put to work in benefiting the UK economy, rather than the EU’s.”

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