Guernsey granted Wednesday 1er December 43 fishing licenses for French boats which will thus be able to continue fishing in its waters after the 1er February 2022, announced the government of the Channel Island. This announcement comes in the midst of a standoff between Paris and London over post-Brexit fishing licenses, the French government accusing the British of granting too few.

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By adding three other boats that will replace ships that have left the French fleet, Guernsey is thus granting 43 licenses, out of 58 applications. They will be able to fish in the 6-12 nautical mile zone off the island, as was the case before Brexit. For the other 15 boats, “Any additional data will be examined”, the government of Guernsey said in a statement.

For the French Minister of the Sea, it is “Excellent news” corn ” the fight ” continue for “111 licenses” post-Brexit still to be obtained for French fishermen. “We, the European Commission and France, have made good progress in a few weeks with Guernsey. The efforts pay off and the work continues to give maximum visibility to professionals. The fight is not over: 111 licenses remain to be obtained “, mainly from Jersey and London, said Annick Girardin.

“An important step”

The island’s foreign minister, Jonathan Le Tocq, greeted a “Milestone” of its licensing roadmap, hoping that it brings “Certainty and stability”.

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The issue of fishing licenses is less problematic with Guernsey, which Paris considers a “Reliable partner” in the negotiation, than it is with London and Jersey. European fishermen can continue to work in UK waters provided they can prove that they previously fished there. But the French and the British argue over the nature and extent of the supporting documents to be provided.

Since the 1er January 2021, France has thus obtained around a thousand fishing licenses in British waters and those of the Channel Islands, but Paris is still asking for a hundred. The European Commission recently asked London to settle the post-Brexit dispute over fishing licenses with France by December 10.

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