Norway, UK, and EU agree deal on fishing quotas
The EU, the UK and Norway have signed an accord on fishing quotas in the North Sea, the first such deal post Brexit, the Norwegian government said on Tuesday.
Fishing rights in the area have been managed under a bilateral cooperation agreement between the EU and Norway since 1980, but the matter was complicated when Britain left the union last year.
"I am pleased that the deal with the EU and Great Britain finally is in place," fisheries minister Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen said in a statement.
"This is the first quota deal between three parties in the North Sea, and a prerequisite for sustainable management."
The agreement comes after out tough talks since the beginning of the year.
It sets an overall catch quota of 13,246 tonnes of cod, 356,357 tonnes of herring and 59,512 tonnes of pollock, and setting individual quotas for the parties.
At the same time, Norway also reached a bilateral quota exchange agreement with the EU, giving fishermen from both sides access to their respective waters.
As the total allowable catch in the North Sea had not been established until now, EU and Norwegian fishermen have not been able to access each other's fishing grounds since the beginning of the year.
A similar bilateral agreement has yet to be concluded between Norway and the UK, noted Mr Ingebrigtsen.
The organisation representing Norwegian professional fishermen, Fiskebat (Fishing boat), said it was "satisfied" with the agreement.
But it called for compensation for the deep-sea fleet, which would be particularly affected by the reduction in total available quotas.
The Norwegian cod quota was at a record low of 2,252 tonnes this year, Fiskebat said in a statement.