Brexit LIVE: ‘Nonsense’ SNP Remainer claims debunked as UK delivers key pledge
Fishing Scotland's Lochs & Rivers: Fern says she doesn't eat fish
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The Scottish Seafood Exports Task Force brought together representatives from the UK Government, Scottish Government and the catching, processing and aquaculture sectors in a bid to solve issues with exporting to the EU. The group, led by Scotland Office ministers, released its final report yesterday which recommended there should be regular engagement between fishing organisations and ministers.
However, SNP MSP for Banff and Buchan Karen Adam, said: “After just six months and only eight meetings, the Westminster Government’s task force has submitted its final report so you might expect that the numerous problems faced by our vital seafood industry have been resolved.
“Spoiler alert – they have most certainly not and the job is not even half done.
“For the Scottish Tories to start to wind up the taskforce now, when so many crucial issues remain outstanding, is nothing short of negligent.
“The SNP has called on the Tories to extend this task force until a satisfactory outcome is achieved. So far our requests have fallen on deaf ears.”
But UK Government Minister for Scotland David Duguid accused the SNP of making “nonsense claims”.
He added: “It’s nonsense for the SNP to dismiss the hard work and many achievements delivered by governments and industry through the task force.
“Far from it, so successful was the format in delivering results for an industry essential to many of our coastal communities, it was agreed by all – including the Scottish Government – that ongoing engagement with stakeholders would continue and I look forward to chairing the new Scottish Seafood Industry Action Group on Tuesday.
“The group, which includes the Scottish Government and key industry figures, will continue to focus its energies on collaborative working and success for the sector, rather than waste time on misguided, cheap political point-scoring.”
It comes after groups including the Scottish Seafood Association and the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation expressed frustration at the lack of Government action over increased red tape and costs to export to the EU after Brexit.
Seafood hauliers also protested against the Brexit fishing deal by stacking lorries in central London.
The task force was set up in February 2021 and disbanded in June.
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