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France’s fishermen have a history of blockading the English Channel to stop other countries from fishing in the waters when they are unhappy. Barrie Deas, the CEO of the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations, claimed French fishermen won’t be happy after fishing quotas in the Channel are renegotiated. It comes as the latest round of Brexit trade talks were finished early due to “significant differences”.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, Mr Deas said: “French fishermen have a long track record of blockading Channel ports when they’re upset about something.
“They’ve done it for much lesser reasons than the UK becoming an independent coastal state, renegotiation of quotas, even if there is access for French fishermen.
“I think it would be naive to expect they will be happy about this or do nothing about it.
“There’s a long history of those kinds of blockades.”
Mr Deas also detailed France takes 84 percent of the quota for cod in the English Channel while the UK is allowed only nine percent.
He explained that the extortionate quotas need to be ironed out in a Brexit trade deal between the UK and EU.
It comes as the bloc wants to see the status quo maintained for fishing access and quotas, but the UK Government wants Britain to have control of its own waters.
He said: “EU vessels have automatic access to the resource-rich UK waters.
“That’s what underpins everything, the deal from the 1970s.
“When quotas were introduced in 1983, a decade later, they reflected that original deal.
“You have situations like, in Channel Cod, the UK share of that quota is nine percent.
“The French is 84 percent.
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“Celtic Sea haddock where the UK share is 10 percent and the French share is 66 percent.
“It’s those kinds of extortions that the fishing industry wants to be ironed out.”
Disagreements over how to guarantee fair competition, fisheries, rules for settling disputes or the role of the EU’s top court have so far prevented progress as the bloc seeks to tie London closely to its rules while Boris Johnson wants to cut his country loose.
The Prime Minister wants a loose trade deal with the EU, the bloc is seeking much closer ties for the future covering climate, fishing, transport and security.
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