Permits issued allowing French fishing boats to return to Bailiwick waters

Commercial French fishermen will now have access to Guernsey's waters if they apply for a permit.

Guernsey States says it is processing applications for the new system which will replace the The London Fisheries Convention that ended following Brexit.

The new system will issue individual authorisation documents to French fishing vessels which choose to fish in Bailiwick waters in 2020. It will only apply during the Brexit Transition Period.

The application forms have also been supplied to French authorities to try to speed up the process.

Guernsey States says staff are processing applications from Normandy and Brittany and have so far issued 13 permits.

A meeting held on Tuesday 4 February briefed the local fishing industry on the arrangements.

I felt that the meeting was positive and that fishermen left the meeting fully understanding the situation.

Deputy Neil Inder, Member of the Committee for Economic Development
Credit: ITV Channel TV

It is expected that Bailiwick fishermen will be able to return to French territory allowing trade to resume.

We have not introduced the authorisation regime for our own reasons, but because it is a requirement under EU law for member state vessels fishing in third country waters and assisting in this way is an indication of the importance that we attach to a continued cordial and constructive relationship with Normandy and France, as our closest neighbour, following the UK’s exit from the EU.

Deputy Lyndon Trott, Vice-President of the Policy & Resources Committee

Application forms and more information for French vessels can be found online.