Leaked reports claimed this week that MEPs in the European Parliament are drafting provisions to be included in the final Brexit agreement – including legislation that Britain should not be allowed an “increase to the UK’s share of fishing opportunities for jointly fished stocks”.
EU countries want fishing rules which apply toall member states to continue to apply to Britain’s waters after the divorce.
As such, the fish in Britain’s territory would be seen as a ‘shared resource’.
The suggestion Britain could be overruled by the EU – once the split becomes official – has angered British politicians.
Outraged Mike Hookem said Britain’s waters must return to “UK control regardless of what the EU want”.
The MEP said: “This is nothing more than the EU wanting to have their cake and eat it.
“Time and again we are told the UK will not get any ‘special deals’ post-Brexit.
“Well, in that case, it should work both ways, and UK waters must return to UK control regardless of what the EU want.”
The documents suggest the EU and Britain cannot keep to the United Nations stocks agreement without “the continued application of the common fisheries policy”.
The EU Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) was first introduced in 1983 when stocks were low.
CFP sets out the rules and laws that control and govern commercial fishing across the entire European Union.
The Union however, suggests fish moving across the territorial waters of different nations are a shared resource and the common fisheries policy therefore sets standardised rules which apply to all EU member nations.
UKIP Fisheries Spokesman, Mike Hookem MEP said: “In 1973 the Government sold out the fishing industry.
“This cannot be allowed to happen again. Under the terms of paragraph three of Article 50, all treaties including the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) will “cease to apply” to the UK, and Britain’s waters will be protected by a 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) under international law.
“This will mean that there will not such thing as “jointly fished stocks” when we leave the EU.
“Anything less than getting back full control of our waters post-Brexit will be another utter betrayal of the fishing industry. Fishermen knew in 1972 that their industry had been stolen from them by politicians desperate to get into the EEC ‘club’ and Brexit is our opportunity to retake control our waters.”
MEPs also insist that EU vessel-owners should continue to be allowed to manage boats under the UK flag.
According to some reports, the British fishing industry could be worth as much as £6.3billion to the UK economy in the post-Brexit age.
Ukip has said the country must capitalise on this, amid fears the UK Government will use fishing as a “bargaining chip”.
Mr Hookem said: “Essentially, this makes Fishing the acid test of whether we are going to get full control of our country back following Brexit or let the EU continue to dictate to us.
“However, it is not unexpected that the EU would make a grab for UK fish stocks when you consider that we currently have billions of pounds’ worth of fish caught in UK waters by EU vessels.
“It is obvious they would be desperate to cling on to that, but it is up to our elected politicians to make sure that does not happen.”
The document concludes: “The nature of future EU-UK relations in fisheries needs to be seen in relation to the UK’s ambition in keeping close ties with its European partners and the common market.
“Every agreement that guarantees UK access to the EU domestic market has to guarantee an access to the UK fishing grounds for the EU fleet.”