Distribution of fishing opportunities

Part of Fisheries Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:15 pm on 13th December 2018.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Peter Aldous Peter Aldous Conservative, Waveney 3:15 pm, 13th December 2018

I am grateful to the Minister for that explanation. On Tuesday, when we debated whether the public good should be one of the objectives of the Bill, I did take on board his point: as fish is a public good already, what is the point of having it as an objective? However, in this instance, we are trying to redistribute fishing quota more equitably so that local communities can benefit, so I do not think that the earlier argument relates this time around.

The Minister has already said that he will look at the fishing statements in a bit more detail. I just ask that, before we get to Report, we ensure that the criteria for the distribution of fishing opportunities are as good as they can be. There was every intention of doing that when the common fisheries policy was reformed in 2012-13, and his predecessor, our right hon. Friend Richard Benyon, did an lot of good work on it. However, fishing communities like the ones I represent are not yet seeing the benefits, and this strikes me as an opportunity to reinforce that point, to make sure it actually happens. I look forward to seeing what the Minister comes up with before Report, but I beg to ask leave to withdraw the amendment.

Hon. Members: No.