Richard Lochhead

Moray SNP News



The Conservatives have sold out Scottish fishing and abandoned their promises to the industry, Richard Lochhead MSP has said.

Despite promises from Moray’s Tory MP, the draft terms of the Brexit transition deal show the UK government has agreed to abide by CFP rules for the whole of the transition period, which ends in December 2020.

The Scottish Fishermen’s Federation responded that “This falls far short of an acceptable deal”. They continued: “Put simply, we do not trust them to look after us.”

Commenting Mr Lochhead said:

“This is an appalling betrayal of Moray by the Conservatives who made taking back control of Scottish waters a major theme of their campaign to win the support of our coastal communities and Moray. No wonder fishing leaders are apoplectic with the Conservatives given the promise that was made to leave the CFP and take back control in March 2019.

“Under the Brexit transition agreement agreed by the Conservatives we’re left with the worst possible situation where Scotland’s fishing quotas will be decided by the rest of the EU with only a weak commitment to consult the UK. It is utter limbo and leaves our fishing communities at the mercy of the EU. Why on earth did the Conservatives agree to this and sell out our fishermen?

“This is also an utter humiliation for our local Conservative MP Douglas Ross who has yet again made promises he hasn’t kept. It seems that after winning Moray last year, the Conservatives think they have the votes in the bag and can get away with anything.

“Scotland’s Tory MPs including Mr Ross seem to spend so much using Westminster as a platform to attack the SNP Government in Scotland and talk about devolved powers that they’ve taken their eye of the ball and neglected their duty to lobby the UK Conservative Ministers and hold them to account on UK responsibilities.

“Not only have they betrayed their constituents but they have failed to convince the wider Conservative Party of the importance of fishing to Scotland. 

“Our fishermen were betrayed when the Conservatives took Moray and Scotland into the Common Fisheries Policy and they’ve betrayed them again when taking us out of the CFP.  UK politicians have never seen fishing as anything other than a negotiating chip to achieve wider European aims.

“What are considered high priorities in Scotland are brushed aside by the UK Government who always take the view they’ve got bigger fish to fry.”