HC Deb 16 February 1956 vol 548 cc2500-1
3. Mr. Hector Hughes

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what proposals relating to the minimum sizes of fish and trawl meshes he intends to make to the other nations concerned in the fishing of the two areas, namely, that of the distant fisheries, from the Barents Sea to Greenland, and that of the nearer and middle water fisheries, covering most of the remaining area of the Atlantic Ocean north of latitude 48°N. and east of longitude 42°W.; and what steps he is taking to that end.

Mr. Amory

The existing minima are to be further considered within the Permanent Commission set up under the Convention covering these waters following a scientific review which that body is carrying out. That review is still in progress and I think it best to await its results.

Mr. Hughes

Will the Minister not say what proposals Britain has made, which nations have met, when they have met, when the next meeting will occur and what the agenda will be?

Mr. Amory

The recommendations are to be made by this scientific committee to the Commission. The United Kingdom is represented on the committee that is to make the recommendations. The report of that committee will be made to the next meeting of the Commission, in May.

Mr. G. R. Howard

Is it not a fact that in every case where infringements of mesh size have been reported to him my right hon. Friend has most energetically taken it up with the Governments concerned?

Mr. Amory

This question of the existing provisions is very important indeed, and I am very anxious to do everything I possibly can to take up as energetically as possible every case brought to my notice.