Question reference: S6W-11066
- Asked by: Karen Adam, MSP for Banffshire and Buchan Coast, Scottish National Party
- Date lodged: 20 September 2022
Current status: Initiated by the Scottish Government. Answered by Mairi Gougeon on 21 September 2022
To ask the Scottish Government what action is being taken to encourage greater landings of key fish stocks into Scotland and maximise economic benefit to coastal communities from national marine resources.
Each year Scottish vessels land around £100 million worth of fish outside of Scotland, often for species for which our nation already has ready processing capacity. This represents a lost opportunity to bring additional investment and downstream benefit to our coastal communities from Scotland’s fishing quotas.
Our fish quotas are a national asset and I want to ensure that fishing opportunities allocated to our fleet, for the most important Scottish species, deliver a substantial economic return to our businesses and communities in Scotland.
That is why today, I am announcing changes to the economic link condition contained in Scottish sea fishing licences. This change to the economic link conditions is a key policy in Scotland’s Fisheries Management Strategy, which supports sustainable and responsible fisheries management in Scotland. The delivery plan which supports the Strategy and outcome of consultation document for changes to the economic link, will be published today at 2pm and can be found at [ Publications - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)
Changes to economic link licence conditions will take effect from 1 January 2023 and will require vessels that catch stocks of key economic importance to Scotland to either:
- Land a set minimum percentage of these stocks into Scotland.
- Return some fishing opportunity to the Scottish Government for re-distribution amongst the Scottish fishing industry.
These changes will help to redistribute economic returns from Scotland’s fishing opportunities to the Scottish Seafood sector and our coastal communities.