The Scottish Fishermen’s Federation today urged the Prime Minister to refuse to accept a bad deal for the UK fishing industry.

Amid media reports that the EU will not accept any material change to access rights or quotas for fishing in UK coastal waters that recognise the truth about sovereignty – in line with international law – chief executive Elspeth Macdonald reminded Boris Johnson of the pledges he and his ministers had made to ensure the UK became a fully-fledged coastal state and not one in name only.

“The Prime Minister and the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove have given a series of undertakings to the industry that the UK will restore sovereignty over UK waters and control who gets to fish for what, where and when.

“That simple principle, which is the legal norm for coastal states, is under threat from the EU’s intransigeance.

“Acceptance of any deal that only delivers pretend sovereignty will be a wholesale betrayal of the industry that the Prime Minister has promised to support.”

She added: “The EU also needs to realise that trade in fish between them and the UK is in balance and that their consumers want to eat the fish from our seas. But fishing opportunities in each other’s waters is far from fair. That is the wrong which has to be put right.”