Boris Johnson has set up UK fishermen for ‘extremely dangerous blow’ with 5-year agreement

Brexit: Expert reveals possible ‘huge blow’ to fishermen

Liam Campling, Professor of International Business and Development at Queen Mary University, warned against Boris Johnson shortening the five year fishing transition period agreed in the Brexit deal. During an interview with, Professor Campling argued it could have “unknowable” negative economic impacts and put the EU in a stronger position. He insisted if the UK shortened this period, the EU would be within their right to introduce tariffs on fishing goods.

This would further destabilise British fishermen and put a strain on the relationship between the UK and EU following the agreed deal between the nations.

Tory MP Sir John Redwood previously argued, while speaking on Brexit Unlocked, that he was hopeful the Government would consider shortening this period to satisfy unhappy fishermen. 

Professor Campling said: “There is a possibility of shortening the five year period.

“But if that was to happen, then all of the remedies, dispute settlement process, would kick in.

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“That would mean the EU would be entirely within its rights to introduce tariffs on EU imports of fish and fish products from the UK.

“We would potentially have more quota but we would have nowhere to sell it.

“That would be a huge blow to the average British fisherman.”

Professor Campling argued that this would make it unlikely that the UK would attempt to shorten the five-year period.

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He continued: “I would say that is a bluster on the part of John Redwood.

“It would actually be extremely dangerous for a lot of commercial activities in Britain should the EU, under the agreement with the UK, use these trade remedies.

“Essentially the EU has the rights to introduce tariffs on fish products.

“If those fish products are deemed not to be an equivalent value of the quota that is taken away then the EU is also able to apply tariffs on other product areas.”


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He reiterated the British Government’s reluctance to shorten the Brexit fishing transition period due to the economic unknowns.

Professor Campling added: “So economically it becomes unknowable.

“The economic impact may end up bleeding across from fisheries into other sectors.

“For example into automobiles or Scottish Whisky, who knows.”

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