I join the Secretary of State in his words of support for all those who work in the fishing industry. It is important that we recognise them.
Amid all the ongoing chaos that we have seen over the Brexit negotiations, Ministers have consistently identified leaving the common fisheries policy as one of the few policy areas in which the Government’s deal can deliver. When the White Paper was published in July, the Secretary of State said:
“Outside the Common Fisheries Policy we can take back control of our waters and revitalise our coastal communities.”
He is also on record as having said:
“The day after we vote to leave, we hold all the cards and we can choose the path we want.”
I intend to set out why the Bill and the current approach to negotiations being pursued by the Government will not, in our view, “revitalise” our left-behind coastal towns, which have been hit hard by years of Tory austerity. I will also set out why, having heard the Secretary of State outline his position just now, I am even more convinced that only a Labour Government can secure the twin goals of a healthy marine environment and thriving coastal communities.