Consultation on the Draft Isle of Man Fisheries Statement

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Closes 24 Feb 2023

Ministerial Foreword to the draft Isle of Man Fisheries Statement

The United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union has fundamentally changed the context within which fisheries management now takes place in UK waters. As an independent coastal state, the UK is no longer bound by the Common Fisheries Policy, and instead, will manage fisheries under the new UK Fisheries Act 2020 and the Joint Fisheries Statement published by the Devolved Administrations.  

Although the Isle of Man was never a member of the European Union, the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture was required to ensure that the management of sea fisheries in the Isle of Man territorial sea complied with the UKs European obligation under the Fisheries Management Agreement 2012.

Post-Brexit, the Isle of Man remains an independent and autonomous British fisheries jurisdiction and, as such, neither the UK Fisheries Act 2020, nor the Joint Fisheries Statement, apply to the Isle of Man.

Therefore, there is a need to set out the Isle of Man’s aims, objectives, principles and plans for sea fisheries post-Brexit, and to ensure that future arrangements with the UK recognise and respect  the Isle of Man’s independence and autonomy, as well as its unique position as a small, island nation within the rich fishing grounds of the Irish sea.

By publishing an Isle of Man Fisheries Statement, the Department will establish the framework under which it will undertake to sustainably manage sea fisheries within the Island’s territorial sea. The Isle of Man Fisheries Statement will replace the ‘Future Fisheries Strategy’ (2015).

Post-Brexit, there are a number of opportunities to improve how sea fisheries are managed, and it is important that the Department and stakeholders work together in a strategic way to realise these opportunities. Equally, there are a number of challenges, which again, must be overcome through effective collaboration.

In this consultation, the Department is seeking the views of stakeholders and the wider public on the proposed Isle of Man Fisheries Statement.

Yours sincerely,

Clare Barber MHK
Minister for the Environment, Food and Agriculture.