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Shameful Betrayal of Scotland's Anglers
SNP President Ian Hudghton MEP has today (Wednesday) reacted angrily to Tory calls in the European Parliament for recreational fishing to be included as part of the reformed Common Fisheries Policy.
In a parliamentary resolution signed by Scottish MEP Struan Stevenson, the Tories state that recreational fishing has not been "tackled" in the Commission's CFP proposals and should be included in the CFP reform process.
A recent Scottish government study found that recreational sea angling supports over 3000 jobs in Scotland and is worth more than £37 million annually.
Mr Hudghton commented:
"At a time when most people are campaigning for a hugely decentralised fisheries policy in Europe, the Tories seem to be advocating more Brussels control.
"The Tories state that recreational fishing has not been 'tackled' in the CFP reform package as if angling was some sort of problem. Angling is not a problem - it's a constructive pastime enjoyed by thousands of Scots and one which contributes millions to the economy.
"The EU's management of our commercial fisheries has been nothing short of disastrous - so calls for Brussels to take control of angling would be laughable if they weren't so serious.
"Generations have enjoyed angling around Scotland's bays, sea-lochs and islands - and Tory calls for the EU to take control must be strongly resisted."
*The text signed by Struan Stevenson states that parliament "Notes that recreational fishing was not tackled in the Commission proposals presented on 13 July 2011; stresses that it should be addressed separately as part of the CFP reform process;".
* The Scottish government's study on the economic impact of recreational sea angling is available at http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Resource/Doc/280284/0084431.pdf