The comments made by David Duguid, the UK Government Minister for Scotland, on 22 January 2021.
It is essential that we know precisely what difficulties are arising so we can tailor solutions. The excellent feedback from DFDS is massively helpful. We are working to streamline systems, while supporting exporters and partners such as DFDS, and the commitment to making the system work is clear across the board.
The UK Government has acknowledged there have been difficulties and we want to work together to provide solutions and restore confidence within this crucial sector so that world-class Scottish seafood can be harvested at sea and sped from port to plate for customers here and abroad.
A £23m additional support scheme for the seafood sector has been announced and the UK Government knows the urgency of rapid delivery. Meetings such as today’s allow us to take on board the industry’s concerns about the eligibility for that support fund, about making it swift and readily accessible.
There are still issues with the supply chain and we are doing all we can to ease them. I have today written to Scottish Government’s Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy, Fergus Ewing, encouraging take-up of our offer of additional support for Food Standards Scotland at Larkhall and providing further detail of our direct support for businesses with the embedding of experts to help firms with paperwork required by the EU.
We want a workable, sure-footed system so the industry can maximise the benefits of Britain’s new status as an independent coastal state, outside the Common Fisheries Policy.