§ 44. Mr. JAMES STUART
asked the Secretary for Scotland whether his attention has been drawn to a resolution of the Nairn Town Council, addressed to the Fishery Board for Scotland, relating to the present deplorable state of the white fishing industry at Nairn caused by the Moray Firth being open to foreign trawlers and seine-net drifters; and whether he contemplates taking any steps to improve the situation?
My right hon. Friend's attention has been drawn to the resolution referred to. The present shortage of white fish is not confined to the area mentioned, but is being experienced in extraterritorial waters off other parts of the Scottish Coast, where the causes suggested in the Resolution are not operative. Foreign trawlers have been observed in the Moray Firth on only eight occasions this year. As regards seine-net fishing, I would refer the hon. and gallant Member to the reply given by the Secretary for Scotland on the 4th March to the right hon. Member for Ross and Cromarty (Mr. Macpherson). The difficult questions involved are receiving my right hon. Friend's careful attention.
§ Mr. MACPHERSON
Are the Scottish Office now going to put into force the recommendations of Lord Mackenzie's Report on this subject?
That matter is being considered at the moment, but there are difficulties in the way. There are not only the difficulties that will require legislation to have this given effect to, but there are difficulties that require diplomatic arrangements with other countries.