Fishing Industry "May Not Survive" A No-Deal Brexit - Exclusive

31 January 2019, 07:32

The director of a British fishing company has warned that the industry may not be able to survive a no-deal Brexit.

Theresa May is returning to Brussels to try to renegotiate the withdrawal agreement, with just 57 days to go until the UK leaves the European Union.

Fishermen have been big critics of the EU due to the Common Fisheries Policy. But while they are still strongly for Brexit, the people who run the companies have warned that disruption caused by a no-deal Brexit could destroy the industry.

Graeme Sutherland, the director of Whitelink Seafoods, told LBC: "As a company, we export into Europe at a rate of 85-90% of what we produce here.

"We are working on a next-day delivery into France for distribution into Europe. So if we are delayed in any way in clearing customs, in effect, we are going to lose 24 hours on delivery.

"We need frictionless borders. It has to be that for our industry to survive."

Fishermen in Fraserborough, Scotland
Fishermen in Fraserborough, Scotland. Picture: LBC

Despite this, the fishermen are still critical of the EU. Peter Bruce, the skipper of the Budding Rose, told LBC's reporter: "Our aim is to leave the EU and get out of the Common Fisheries Policy.

"This aim comes from 30 years of being ruled by the Common Fisheries Policy which has massive effects on our coastal communities all around Britain.

"We see great opportunities for the fishing industry. 55% of the fish taken from round the UK in our waters is taken by non-UK boats - boats from France, boats from Spain.

"We see us as being able to take a bigger percentage of the catch in our waters."