Scottish fisheries minister delivers ultimatum to Isle of Man over ‘dangerous’ scallop plan

The Manx government has announced the measure to protect stocks and prevent over-fishing. It was due to come into force on Monday but was postponed after the Scottish Government said it breached a fisheries agreement.

Geoffrey Boot, the Isle of Man’s Environment, Food and Agriculture Minister, yesterday insisted forcing boats to report every day was needed to tackle underreporting of catch.

He said that his government had taken account of Mr Ewing’s concerns and modified arrangements so that vessels can return to their home ports and report their catches electronically, if their trips are confined to Manx waters.

But Mr Ewing rejected his offer, saying: “We have put forward a number of alternative measures that would ensure sustainable fishing, and be more targeted, proportionate and, importantly, not disadvantage any one sector of vessels.

“I am deeply disappointed and frustrated that the Isle of Man Government has not listened to these alternatives or our concerns which is why I have been left with no option but to consider invoking the dispute resolution process as set out in the Fisheries Management Agreement.”

He added: “I would urge the Isle of Man Government to come to Scotland for further discussions as we cannot accept such an obviously restrictive measure that would damage our crews carrying out their legitimate fishing activities.”

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