UK Fisheries call for tariffs on Norway, Greenland and Iceland to compensate for loss of access to their waters

Despite two years of campaigning to save the UK’s distant-waters fishing industry, UK Fisheries Ltd’s state-of-the-art vessel Kirkella (pictured), a cod and haddock freezer trawler and part of the UK’s distant waters fishing fleet, is once again tied up in Hull.

UK Fisheries still have no access to the Norwegian coastal waters where our crews should be working right now.

The company said in a statement this week that it has provided “a clear and simple negotiating roadmap to the government that would, without costing taxpayers a penny, secure us Arctic cod quota in the Norwegian zone, guarantee good jobs for our crew and financial security for their families, and bring with it further investments of up to £100m in the fishing industry in the Humberside region, on top of the £120m our owners have already invested there.

“But despite cross-party support nationally as well as from local politicians in the north-east of England, and despite the simple common sense of the argument that we should make tariff-free access to our markets for the Norwegians conditional on them offering us access to their waters, the government has somehow yet to take this logical step. The UK continues to offer Norway something for nothing, and it is our crews and our industry that are suffering.”

UK Fisheries are calling for the UK government:

  • To negotiate quotas with third countries that are no less than the UK fleet would have if the country had remained in the EU.
  • In Norway, this means agreeing at least 16.95k tonnes of Arctic cod out of the 25k tonnes set aside for third countries by Norway in its economic zone. If the Government were ambitious and secured the full 25k tonnes this would create a much-needed expansion of the UK distant waters fleet with new jobs and secure an extra £60-100m of investment in the fleet.
  • Now that the UK has conceded in the Trade and Cooperation Agreement that trade and access to fisheries are linked, the UK must deploy its independent trade muscle to secure the best deals with Norway, Greenland and Iceland for its fishermen.
  • If these countries fail to provide the UK distant waters fleet with access to their waters, the UK must impose tariffs of 10 - 25 percent on their exports of fish and fisheries products to the UK to compensate for any loss of access to their waters.

Image: By Mowgli786 - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

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