UK and France at odds over post-Brexit fishing rights | Economic news
By SYLVIE CORBET and PAN PYLAS, Associated Press
PARIS (AP) – The UK and France are once again at loggerheads over fishing rights in the Channel – the latest post-Brexit feud between the two countries.
A day after the UK announced that it had approved only 12 of 47 applications for new licenses for French small vessels to fish in its territorial waters, the authorities on the island of Jersey refused the license applications. of 75 French boats to operate in its waters.
Jersey, which is only 14 miles (22 kilometers) from the French coast, is a British Crown dependency outside of the United Kingdom. As such, it has its own powers regarding who is allowed to fish in its territorial waters.
The refusals of permits angered the French authorities.
Political cartoons about world leaders
“These decisions are totally unacceptable and inadmissible,” French government spokesman Gabriel Attal said on Wednesday, warning against possible “retaliatory measures” from the 27 countries of the European Union. Attal said the restrictions run counter to the post-Brexit deal that was signed between Britain and the EU.
The French government intends to work with the European Commission to find a solution, Attal said. He expressed his solidarity with the French fishermen, saying he understood their anger because they had provided “all the justifications” to obtain their licenses.
French Maritime Minister Annick Girardin called a meeting on Wednesday with fisheries representatives to prepare a response.
“French fishing should not be taken hostage by the British for political purposes,” she said.
Since the UK left the EU’s economic orbit earlier this year, relations between London and Paris have become increasingly frayed.
The fishing spat comes just weeks after Paris was infuriated by Australia’s decision to cancel a multibillion-dollar order for French submarines following a new defense pact with the Kingdom United and the United States
It also comes months after the French threatened to cut the power supply to Jersey, which gets 95% of its electricity from France. At the time, dozens of French boats surrounded the main port of the island, St Helier. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson even sent two Royal Navy patrol boats to Jersey.
Concern is that Jersey’s latest move could lead to something similar happening again.
A more detailed examination of the Jersey decision shows that the government granted 64 licenses of the 170 French boats that applied. Another 31 are issued temporary licenses to give them more time to show they have a history of fishing in Jersey waters, in line with what Jersey said is in line with the UK’s post-Brexit trade deal. United with the EU. Boats that had not been licensed had 30 days to exit Jersey waters.
“We will continue to have the door open to further data and evidence of fishing activity, including for vessels that have already been considered, and we look forward to working collaboratively to resolve the remaining complex issues. “Jersey Minister of External Relations Ian Gorst said. .
On Tuesday, the UK government also said it would also consider any other evidence provided in support of the remaining French license applications.
Pylas reported from London.
Follow all of AP’s stories on post-Brext developments at https://apnews.com/hub/Brexit.
Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.