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How will Brexit affect the Spanish fisheries industry?

A number of segments of the fleet that fish in waters under the jurisdiction of the UK have been identified, together with Spanish capital investment in UK companies and other fishing interests that may be affected in the future to a greater or lesser extent, depending on the future fisheries agreement reached between the EU and the UK.

The fish farming sector represents a small proportion of Spanish trade with the United Kingdom, and therefore alternative markets for supply and export could readily be found.

The ultimate goal for the fishing sector is to maintain a relationship with the United Kingdom that is as close as possible to the current situation, that is, to maintain the status quo.

In any event, now that the Withdrawal Agreement has been ratified by both parties, the EU and British fleets will continue to have mutual access to their respective waters. During the transition period there will be negotiations on the access conditions to waters and markets that must be in force by the deadline of 31 December 2020, or where applicable, the extension determined according to what is established in the agreement.

Will fishing continue in UK waters?

On ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement by both parties, fishing may continue in UK waters from 1 February under the same conditions as has been the case so far, until at least 31 December 2020 (the transition period).

During this transition period a fisheries agreement will be negotiated with the aim of allowing fishing to continue in UK waters as of 1 January 2021.

Will UK ports be able to be used for landing?

Following the ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement by both parties, UK ports will be able to be used under the same conditions as until now, at least until 31 December 2020, in other words during the established transition period.

How does Brexit affect fishing quotas?

Following ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement by both parties, the quotas adopted by the EU at the Council of Fisheries Ministers in December 2019 will also apply to the UK and in the same conditions in 2020, i.e. during the established transition period.

At the same time, a fisheries agreement must be negotiated with the EU, which will establish a number of issues, including fishing quotas corresponding to each party and the system of access to waters as of 1 January 2021.

How will Brexit affect the subsidies under the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) in Spain?

The UK must comply with all its financial obligations derived from its commitments in the current Multiannual Financial Framework for 2014-2020, which includes the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF). Thus, Brexit should have no effect on subsidies in Spain during this period.

Given this, the subsidies corresponding to the CFP in Spain will depend on what is agreed between the 27 remaining Member States for the future Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027.

What will the future Fisheries Agreement be like?

The EU and the UK will shortly begin to negotiate a Fisheries Agreement that will enter into force as of 1 January 2021.

The purpose of this agreement is to establish fishing conditions with the aim of developing fisheries within the limits of sustainability and conservation, ensuring the socioeconomic viability of the fleets involved.

The text must include matters such as mutual access conditions to waters and the distribution of the fishing opportunities.

The negotiation of the fisheries agreement will be linked to the negotiation of a global trade agreement with the UK.

For more information on the preparations being made by the European Commission for negotiating the future agreement, see the following link.

Non official translation