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Business / Fishing industry oppose to more time in ‘Brexit waiting room’

SUGGESTIONS that the transition period during which Britain is leaving the European Union could be extended by another year to the end of 2021 has been greeted with horror by the fishing industry.

To avoid a no-deal outcome as Brexit talks head for a final showdown, a longer transition period during which Britain remains part of the single market and the customs union appeared as one way forward to buy more time for negotiations.

But fishing leaders said on Thursday that it made “no sense whatsoever to force the industry to operate under the Common Fisheries Policy beyond 2020”.

In a statement, the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation said: “All the practical international processes for the UK to become an independent coastal state, exercising its rights and responsibilities accordingly, are already in place.

“Further postponement would erode if not endanger our emergence as one of the primary coastal states in the North-East Atlantic.

“There is a genuine fear among fishermen that any extension to the UK’s time in the Brexit waiting room would be used by the EU to place conditions on the return of fish stocks that are rightfully ours via long-term agreements that would be difficult to disentangle in years to come.”