Orkney and Shetland Liberal Democrat MP, Alistair Carmichael, has issued a “call for evidence” ahead of a parliamentary debate on the impact of Brexit on the fishing industry. Mr Carmichael secured the debate, to be held at 9:30am on the 13th July, to review the consequences of the UK’s departure from the EU for businesses after six months, and to present a wide range of concerns and challenges raised by fishermen, processors and exporters during that time.
Anyone who wishes to raise evidence or concerns relating to the impact of Brexit on the seafood industries is encouraged to contact Mr Carmichael’s office by phone or email by Friday 9th July.
Mr Carmichael said:
“Six months have now passed since we departed from the Common Fisheries Policy, from the European Union and from the frictionless trading relations we had before January. In those six months fishermen and the many businesses surrounding the fishing industry have felt let down by a government that promised them a “sea of opportunity” but delivered only red tape and disappointment. It is time to take stock of the situation.
“Any responsible government would conduct a public review of its policy decisions on fishermen. Absent any such accounting, it is up to us to take ministers to task and demand answers on what has become quite a comprehensive range of failures on fishing. I am calling for anyone involved in the fishing industry to get in touch about their concerns so that we can make the strongest case possible.”
“Every fisherman, every processor and every exporter I have spoken to in the past months has presented me with a litany of frustrations with the government. These run the gamut, from lost markets due to trade barriers, unfulfilled promises over quota uplift or simply lack of access to needed worker support. The list is long but ministers have not listened. After six months, the coming debate is a chance to change the narrative – and make our voices heard.”