Owen Paterson, Tory MP for North Shropshire, urged the government not to cave in during the Brexit negotiations and leave under the World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules if it wants to save the UK’s fishing industry.
The former Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secretary highlighted how time sensitive it is for the UK to immediately leave the CFP.
He said: “The disastrous Chequers White Paper advocates a lengthy transition phase under European rules which would prove fatal.
“Under the transition proposals that must be implemented in full under ‘good faith’, the UK must obey all incoming EU laws, including the 2019 discard ban.”
It is vital that we use Brexit to free ourselves completely from its grasp and implement a bespoke policy tailored to the needs of the dynamic mixed fisheries which surround our shores
Owen Paterson MP
According to the Tory MP, the EU use the extra time given by the Chequers plan to enforce this ban as an international law.
This would force a country unable to catch all the resources in its waters to give them to its neighbours.
He continued: “This is a very long way from the Government’s promise that ‘the UK will be an independent coastal state, able to control access to its waters.’”
To make sure British fishermen will be truly free after March 2019, Mr Paterson said the government should adopt a more aggressive strategy against Brussels.
Brexit news: Owen Paterson MP urged Theresa May to abandon the Chequers plan (Image: GETTY)
He said: “Under the bold terms of a WTO deal, we can immediately abrogate the CFP and revert to international law, automatically retaking control over all water and resources within our Exclusive Economic Zone and negotiating with our neighbours on an equal footing from a position of strength.”
But, he continued, it won’t be enough for Downing Street to just leave the bloc under WTO terms.
He said: “National control is no panacea if we replicate the same failed policies in London instead of Brussels.
“It is vital that we use Brexit to free ourselves completely from its grasp and implement a bespoke policy