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Amendment 29

Part of Fisheries Bill [HL] - Report (2nd Day) – in the House of Lords at 4:00 pm on 24th June 2020.

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Photo of Baroness McIntosh of Pickering Baroness McIntosh of Pickering Conservative 4:00 pm, 24th June 2020

My Lords, I am minded to support this amendment, as it addresses an issue I have raised ever since we had the informal briefing with the then Minister for Fisheries, now Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. I am slightly concerned because, in spite of what we hear about various schemes for new entrants, I have not identified a great rush for new entrants over and above what the current provisions allow. I raised this at the informal briefing and was given an assurance on it; currently the under-10 fishermen—I had the privilege of working with them most recently in Filey, but also in other parts of the country—rely very heavily on shellfish, but, as was said previously, are given scraps of other whitefish under the table through the very complicated system of top-slicing discards which are then gathered into a pool from which the under-10s can benefit.

We were led to believe in the informal briefing that an official mechanism would be put in place to ensure a stricter, clearer, more transparent situation in which the under-10s would benefit from any remaining quota on an annual basis. My noble friend the Minister may well be able to put my mind at rest here, that that provision is somewhere and I am not immediately seeing it, but that promise was made and I invoke it here: that under the provisions of this Bill, under-10s will benefit from a higher and more regular quota going forward.