Responding to a government document setting out the UK’s legal position on the transition or implementation period today Bertie Armstrong, chief executive of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation, said: “It is very encouraging that the UK government has rejected the EU’s proposals and intends that we become a fully functioning Coastal State from 29th March 2019.

“With that should come control over 100 per cent of our stocks and access to our waters, the starting point for the UK to begin restoring its proud status as an independent fishing nation like Norway instead of being compelled to give away 60 per cent of our fish.

“However, there is clearly a long way to go, and real political backbone will be required in the negotiations with Brussels to ensure that the only palatable outcome for the fishing industry and our coastal communities is achieved.”