Future of Inshore Fisheries: Did FOIF die?

The NFFO takes stock of what happened to the Future of Inshore Fisheries Initiative. Amid Covid and the general post-TCA gloom, many are wondering what happened to the Future of Inshore Fisheries initiative. The vivid flash of inspiration and optimism when fishers and managers got together, in October 2019, for the wildly successful FOIF conference seems like an eternity ago. Since then, we have been through the mill and there has been a disturbing silence about the follow up to the conference. The UK’s failure to secure an exclusive 12-mile limit seems like a nail in the coffin lid for the project.

NFFO Keeps Pressure on for Financial Support

The NFFO has written again to Secretary of State, George Eustice and Fisheries Minister, Victoria Prentis, for a second trance of financial support for fishing businesses which are struggling to survive.

Need Should be Basis For Additional Quota

The NFFO has written to the Secretary of State, George Eustice, arguing that additional quota secured from the EU should be first and foremost use to address cases where acute quota shortages threaten the viability of fishing vessels.

Trade Offs and Maturity

Mature and responsible fisheries management frequently requires necessary trade-offs between different objectives. By weighing the pros and cons and using the best available evidence, it is possible to edge towards the best all-round outcomes, gaining here, sacrificing there. It is what adults do every day of their lives after they learn, quite early on that “you can’t have it all.”

Draft Joint Statement & Press Release 

Government, the national fishing federations and the Fishermen’s Mission share a commitment to the whole fishing industry. This means not only the fishing businesses that make up the sector - but also the crews who work on the vessels as owner/operators, self-employed share-fishermen, or fishermen under employment contracts. 

Remote Electronic Monitoring: Instrument of Control or Assurance Tool?

As the Fisheries Bill passes through the House of Lords, amendments have been laid down that would make CCTV cameras aboard all fishing vessels mandatory. The NFFO provides its view.

Fisheries Response Fund

Statement by the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations

Government announces financial support for England’s fishing businesses

£10 million fund for England’s fishing and aquaculture sectors announced. More than 1,000 fishing and aquaculture businesses in England will receive direct cash grants through a fisheries support scheme announced today by Environment Secretary George Eustice and Chief Secretary to the Treasury Steve Barclay.

Financial Support Package Announced for English Fishing Industry

After intense political activity, and in some quarters mounting despair, the Government has overnight announced a package of financial support for the English fleet. Its purpose is to mitigate some of the impacts of the coronavirus health emergency by covering some of the fixed costs faced by fishing businesses, whilst facing collapsed or seriously depleted markets.

Political Pressure for Support Package Ratcheted Up

The NFFO has continued to ratchet up political pressure on the Government for a financial support package for the English fleets. Hundreds of MPs, including coastal MPs and government ministers, including those in the Treasury, have received briefing notes and urged to intervene. The telephone lines have been red hot as Scotland, Northern Ireland and then Wales announced support for their schemes. So far, the Treasury has stalled on English support, apparently fearful of setting a precedent for other sectors of the economy which fall through the financial support measures already announced.

Supporting the UK’s fishing industry through COVID-19 and beyond: New Interactive Retail Map and Grants Programme Launched

COVID-19 has resulted in the closure of fish markets and the UK restaurant trade is now at a standstill. Now, more than ever, it is vital that we help fishers find local markets, so that they can keep working and to ensure that the British public has access to a vital, fresh food supply.

Frustration Mounting

Frustration is mounting across those parts of the fishing industry impacted by the coronavirus, but which fall through the gaps in the financial support offered by the government. NFFO Chief Executive, Barrie Deas said, “We know that the case has been made to Treasury for a support package for the fishing industry. We also know that this is being discussed at the highest levels within government – but the delay in making an announcement as we head into a holiday weekend is creating a profound sense of frustration, not to say despair.”

Covid-19 NFFO Briefing Note for MPs

National Federation of Fishermen's Organisanisations Covid-19 support package for the fishing industry briefing - April 2020

Pressure Mounts on Government for Fishing Support Package

Pressure is mounting on the UK Government for a support package for the fishing industry in England and Wales. Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man have already announced financial support packages of various kinds for their fleets. The focus is now on Westminster for parallel support for fishing businesses squeezed by mounting fixed costs and collapsed demand, due to covid-19, and who cannot access other business support mechanisms.

Salmon Compensation Delays

We have been informed that the process of compensating salmon fishermen for the early closure of the drift net fishery has been impacted by the coronavirus health emergency.

NFFO Pressing Government for Bespoke Fishing Support Package

The immediate issue confronting the fishing industry, as the covid-19 virus crisis takes grip of the economy, are the gaps in the otherwise very significant financial support measures announced by the Government.

NFFO/UKAFPO Reaction to Coronavirus Support Measures

Until yesterday, provision for the self-employed was the biggest gap in the UK Government’s unprecedented package of financial support measures to mitigate the economic shock caused by the coronavirus health emergency. There is no doubting the scale of the ambition and the clear intention behind the steps taken so far.

Support Package for Self-Employed Share Fishermen in next 24/48 Hours

An announcement is expected within the next 24/48 hours on package of support that will help self-employed share-fishermen impacted by the coronavirus. A proposal has been submitted to the Treasury for decision. Whilst no guarantees are being given, there are high expectations that this new package will fill some of the gaps in the economic support measures announced so far. Self-employed share-fishermen are not eligible for the support given to wage earners (80% of earnings up to £2500 per month) and so it is imperative that the government acts urgently to fill this gap.The announcement on share fishermen is likely to be part of a package on measures for the self-employed more generally.

Impact of Coronavirus on Fishing

Dialogue has begun between the NFFO and the Government on how best to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on the fishing industry over its duration.

Pelagics Prepare for UK Adjustment

The UK’s new status as an independent coastal state was widely recognised at a recent seminar held at the North Atlantic Seafood Conference in Bergen. An audience of invited guests heard from a panel which included representatives from the Norwegian, Faeroese and Danish pelagic organisations along with the NFFO. The seminar was organised by Norge Sildesalgslag.

A New Equilibrium

The tectonic plates of European and internal UK politics are shifting. One consequence of this is that fishing has been thrust into a political prominence not seen since the cod wars with Iceland in the 1970s. Fishing rights have become one of the most emblematic issues associated with the UK’s departure from the EU. The NFFO examines where this shift will take the UK fishing industry.

Catch App for Under-10s

The MMO is introducing a mobile phone-based catch app for recording catches from the under 10 metre fleet. The NFFO addresses questions that have arisen.

The Year Ahead – A UK/EU Fisheries Agreement

In an industry that has experienced many momentous years and critical turning points, 2020 stands to be one of the most pivotal in our history.

New Government and Fisheries

The election of a Conservative government, with a solid majority, means that the passage of the Withdrawal Agreement through Parliament seems guaranteed; meaning that the UK will leave the EU on 31st January 2020. The provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement spell out that, from that date, the UK will be an independent coastal state, with regulatory autonomy over fishing within its exclusive economic zone, albeit subject to a transition period to the end of 2020, during which the UK would still be subject to the Common Fisheries Policy.

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