Last week, UK chief Brexit negotiator Lord Frost presented Brussels with a three-year adjustment period over fisheries. Despite this major concession from Britain, an agreement on fisheries remains a huge stumbling block as deadline day approaches. Executive of The National Federation of Fishermen's Organisations, Barrie Deas argued the EU is yet to regard the UK as an independent state.
Mr Deas stated big gaps remain between the two sides as EU states such as France desperately try to retain unrestricted access to British waters. He stated: “I think we're some considerable way away from an agreement.
“My understanding is that this idea of a three-year adjustment period was something that the UK suggested to the EU, but haven't really had a response.
“That's where the big gap is, and where countries like France are digging their heels in.”
The UK has already agreed a historic fisheries agreement with Norway, the first as an independent coastal nation. The deal sets out annual negotiations over access to waters and quotas.
Due to the proposal on quotas and access, this illustrates the strange demands put forward by the EU, said Mr Deas. This deal similar to the treaty between the EU and Norway and you would think it should be the basis of any future agreement between Brussels and Britain.
Deas went on “I do think the Norway agreement is big because it's the first fisheries agreement where the UK is defined as an independent coastal state and should be how the EU treats Britain.
"The EU-Norway agreement also shows how Brussels treated the nation for 40 years. It's how the UK will relate to the Faroe Islands, to Norway, to Iceland and it just puts the spotlight on how strange the EU’s demands are. And I think even the EU Commission thinks their demands are strange.”
It seems Germany may be keen to find a resolution with Chancellor Angela Merkel urging French President, Emmanuel Macron, to drop his demands on fisheries.
States such as France, want continued access to British waters similar to what they have gained within the Common Fisheries Policy. The UK being an independent state, Lord Frost has rejected this demand. Under his three-year transition proposal, the two sides would use that time to adjust to new measures, thus giving coastal communities time to adapt to the situation. Fishing quotas would be reduced gradually year on year.
Following the latest round of negotiations, Lord Frost stated: "On fisheries the gap between us is unfortunately very large and, without further realism and flexibility from the EU, risks being impossible to bridge. "These issues are fundamental to our future status as an independent country."
With such a short time scale and such a huge issue to overcome it does not bode well for the pound.
Today we will witness the release of US jobless claims and there is expected to be a slight retraction. If data lands away from expectations this could cause a change in dollar value so is worth keeping an eye on if you have a trade involving USD.
Tomorrow we will see the release of UK GDP. Figures are expected to land at 4.6% down from 6.6% the previous month. If data lands below the expectation we could see further Sterling weakness.
The best in the business. I use FCD frequently and have absolutely no hesitation in recommending them to others. Pricing is immensely keen and front and back offices are highly efficient. Great all round service.
Good prices, efficient and friendly service – what more could one ask for.
Quick and efficient way of moving our money. Don’t have to worry about the money not being in our bank the following day. Having been using you for 10 years now.
I have absolutely no complaints about the services I have received from you. Every time I have used your services I have received complete satisfaction in every way. Excellent all the time.