Sea Fish Industry Authority: fees for services provided for industry in EU

Fisheries Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 5:15 pm on 17 December 2018.

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Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of George Eustice George Eustice The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The Sea Fish Industry Authority—Seafish—is a levy-funded, UK-wide body set up to promote the consumption of seafood, protect the reputation of the industry and provide information, evidence and advice for decision making in the supply chain. It may provide services for persons in the sea fish industry within and outside the UK. It is required to charge in full for such services provided to those from non-EU states, but section 3(5) of the Fisheries Act 1981 prevents it from charging those from EU states more than those from the UK. The clause will remove that provision.

We are including the clause in the Bill because the power in section 8(1) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 may not be used to make regulations that impose or amend fees. In practice, Seafish sets out all of its charges across recovery levels, so the clause will not result in any practical change. However, it is important that no distinction is made between services provided to EU and to non-EU companies once the UK leaves the EU.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 30 accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Clause 31