Brexit: Andrew Pierce says fishing ‘teething problems’ will pass
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Talks with Norway aimed at thrashing out an agreement for 2021 collapsed in April, with no prospect of a deal being agreed for this year. But Norway Fisheries Minister Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen and Victoria Prentis held crunch talks on Monday in an attempt to agree to a deal for 2022.
Oslo holds the UK in high regard to agree to a future deal on quotas, with Mr Ingebrighten claiming Britain is a “constructive partner” in fisheries after Monday’s meeting.
However, a UK national fishing body said it “wouldn’t be celebrating” despite the movement.
UK Fisheries CEO Jane Sandell told Express.co.uk: “It’s good that the two sides are talking, but you can’t fish for good intentions.
“To run our business and give work to our crews we need more than a hope that things might sort themselves out next year.
“We need quota that we can fish now, and Defra has failed to deliver anything in Norwegian waters for this year.
“So we won’t be celebrating just yet.”
Fisheries Minister Victoria Prentis added: “While we agree on many issues, there are fisheries management issues where we have differences.
“However, the strength of our relationship means that we can discuss areas of disagreement maturely and constructively.
“The UK and Norway have much in common as independent coastal states, and with increased investment in our vibrant aquaculture industries we are both key producers of sustainable seafood.”
In the absence of an agreement with the UK, Norway can set its own quotas and tariffs and vessels such as the deep-water trawler Kirkella are unable to fish off Norway.
Kirkella, which is based in Hull is one of the UK’s biggest fishing trawlers and can catch up to 2.3 million fish in a week-long trip in waters off Norway and Greenland.
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8am update: Protocol on agenda as French President Macron to visit Ireland
French President Emmanuel Macron will arrive in Ireland later for his first official visit.
Mr Macron is to undertake a one-day tour of Dublin, and will meet with President Michael D Higgins and Taoiseach Micheal Martin, as well as visiting Trinity College and the Guinness Enterprise Centre.
It fulfils part of an election pledge by Mr Macron to visit all 27 EU member states, with Ireland one of only four countries yet to be crossed off his list.
The French President will meet with the Irish Taoiseach for lunch at Government Buildings, where Brexit, the future of the EU, Covid-19 and the ongoing situation in Afghanistan are expected to be on the agenda.
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