Automatic rights for EU vessels to fish in UK waters to end

In what will be a highly popular move, the British government is to introduce a bill into parliament on for legislation to end automatic rights for European Union vessels to fish in UK waters.

Under the Fisheries Bill, Britain will leave the European Union’s Common Fisheries Policy at the end of the 11-month Brexit transition period on December 31st, giving it the power to operate as an independent coastal state.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said that would allow Britain to operate its fish stocks sustainably outside the EU.

“In future, access to fish in UK waters will be a matter for the UK to negotiate and we will decide on the rules that foreign vessels must follow,” it said in a statement.

However, regaining control of Britain’s rich fishing waters may have repercussions for its much larger financial sector as the EU and Britain negotiate final departure plans.

Hopes were high that Prime Minister Boris Johnson would prioritise the financial sector - Britain’s largest export industry and biggest corporate tax generator - in trade talks. But bank sources told Reuters last week that a push by the EU for fishing access to UK waters and London’s stance that it will diverge from EU rules are prompting them to review hard-Brexit plans that could see more jobs than anticipated move to Europe.

A spokesman for Johnson had flagged the fisheries legislation on Monday, saying “we are going to be taking back control of our own fishing waters. The EU should be in no doubt about our determination on that issue.”

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