Jersey’s measures on fisheries "unacceptable", Minister repeats

Brexit – Fisheries in the Channel – Reply by Mme Annick Girardin, Minister of Marine Affairs, to a question in the National Assembly

Paris, 11 May 2021

The [Trade and] Cooperation Agreement is having trouble being implemented. We’ve talked about it several times here, and last week, replying to a question from your colleague, I reiterated my position, saying, among other things, that the measures taken by Jersey were – and I also repeated it several times – unacceptable in both form and substance.

Let’s return to the facts: on 30 April, Jersey issued French ships with 41 of the 266 licences applied for.

We’ve found out through the fishermen that no official procedures have been carried out and that, at the same time, a law adopted by Jersey sets additional technical restrictions. That’s unacceptable; we said so immediately.

I alerted the European Commission so that it could respond and reiterate the conditions of the agreement. Our position has always been: the agreement and nothing but the agreement. Jersey, which is in its waters, can certainly legislate on the matter, but the agreement nevertheless recalls that it must inform the European Commission, via London, so that the other parties – namely the European Commission and France – can respond; that’s what it’s important to set out again.

Yesterday I spoke to the European commissioner, as I had promised, and the United Kingdom’s fisheries minister, and I reminded them both – you know how frank I am, and some people have talked about that a lot in the past week – that the measures were null and void and that it was totally unfair to act in this way. I also recalled that while the Jersey issue worried us all, I still hadn’t forgotten the Hauts-de-France region and the issue of fishing in the 6-12 nautical miles zone.

You ask me what the situation is today: Jersey has just proposed to us delaying the technical restrictions to the end of July, in order to resume discussions in the coming hours.

France will respond in writing./.

Published on 14/05/2021

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