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Exiting the European Union

The UK's withdrawal from the European Union will lead to some of the most significant changes to the UK, and Scotland, political and economic landscape in decades. Although relations with the European Union are a reserved matter, the consequences of leaving the EU will be felt in a large range of devolved areas, and the Scottish Government therefore has a critical role in ensuring that the devolved settlement is protected and that Scotland's national interests are secured.

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IMO Numbers

If your vessel is 100 gross tons or above, or is 12 metres long or more, you will have to have an IMO number to fish in EU waters. To find out how to obtain an IMO number and register it with the Single Issuing Authority, please visit the UK Government website.

Guidance if the UK leaves the EU without a deal

The UK has received a further extension to Article 50, up to the end of January 2020. However, it remains possible that the UK may leave the EU without a deal at or before that date. Please continue to consider any steps you may need to take to prepare for a no deal exit. This page will be updated as and when further information is available. More information is also available on the UK Government website.


If the UK leaves the EU without a deal you need to be aware of new requirements that the EU will apply to all third countries - which will include the UK after exit. There are leaflets below to help you understand what you need to do if any of the fish that you catch is exported to the EU, either by yourself or by the agent/processor you sell your catch to.

In addition, DEFRA has recently published information on:

If you are exporting you may also find this checklist helpful. It provides additional links, and a list of issues that you may wish to consider in preparing to export after a no deal exit. And for for more information on how Brexit may affect your business please review the Prepare for Brexit website.

EORI Numbers

In addition, to be able to export seafood to the EU, you will need to have an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number. The process is quick and easy and can be done by visiting the UK Government website.

 

Guide for Fishers

These guidelines are to assist the industry in understanding the additional regulatory requirements resulting from the UK
leaving the EU without an agreement. It will still be necessary for UK vessel Masters and owners to comply with all other regulatory legislative and reporting requirements in addition to licence conditions.

Individuals should consult with the full regulations regarding Catch Certificate reporting requirements. They can be found in Council Regulation (EC) No 1005/2008 with detailed implementing rules being contained in Commission Regulation (EC) No 1010/2009.

Catch Certificates are not required for some ‘fishery products’ when importing into the EU.

Excluded fishery products are:

  • Freshwater fishery products
  • Aquaculture products obtained from fry or larvae
  • Ornamental fish
  • Some mollusc species and presentations including oysters, scallops and mussels.

We advise you to speak to the relevant contacts in your supply chain to confirm understanding and requirements.

Guide for Fishers 2

Fish in UK waters* and Land in EU

Fish in UK waters and Land in EU leaflet cover

STAGE 1: OBTAIN CATCH CERTIFICATE: The Master/agent. As the exporter will need to obtain a validated Catch Certificate(s) to forward to the EU importer.

STAGE 2: SUBMIT PSC1 TO NORTH EAST ATLANTIC FISHERIES COMMISSION (NEAFC): The Master will need to to submit the PSC1 form to the North East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) and this will be validated by the vessels flag state. The Master/agent, as the exporter will need to obtain a validated Catch Certificate(s) and forward to the EU importer.

STAGE 3: NOTIFY EU PORT OF LANDING: The Master/agent, as the exporter, will need to notify the EU designated port at least 4 hrs before its arrival.

STAGE 4: SUBMIT COMPLETED CATCH CERTIFICATE: Before landing, the EU importer will need to complete the declaration (section 11) on the Catch Certificate and submit to the EU competent authorities of destination/EU Member State(s) within the required time frame.

STAGE 5: LAND CATCH IN EU: The vessel will land its catch.

*This process also applies to fishing in third country waters (e.g. Norway; Faroes; EU), if the UK has the appropriate agreements in place. Please contact Marine Scotland for updates.

*DOWNLOAD THE FULL LEAFLET*

Export non-UK ‘third country’ fish to EU

Export non UK fish leaflet cover

IF THE IMPORT WAS ONLY STORED OR TRANSPORTED IN THE UK

STAGE 1: OBTAIN THIRD COUNTRY CATCH CERTIFICATE: The exporter will obtain the original Catch Certificate, validated by the third country.

STAGE 2: OBTAIN STORAGE STATEMENT: The exporter will complete the Storage Document online including the third country catch certificate reference and forward the Storage Document to the EU importer.

STAGE 3: SUBMIT STORAGE STATEMENT AND CATCH CERTIFICATES: The EU importer will submit the Storage Document to the EU competent authorities of the destination/EU Member State(s) within the required time frame.

STAGE 4: OBTAIN EHC: The exporter will obtain the required Export Health Certificate (EHC).

STAGE 5: CONSIGNMENT TO BIP: The consignment is transported with the EHC (and other relevant invoicing, customs and packing documentation) to an EU Border Inspection Post (BIP) where it is approved (or rejected) and enters the EU.

More information on exporting and importing seafood is available on the gov.uk website.

IF THE IMPORT WAS PROCESSED IN THE UK

STAGE 1: OBTAIN THIRD COUNTRY CATCH CERTIFICATE: The exporter will obtain the original Catch Certificate, validated by the third country.

STAGE 1: OBTAIN PROCESSING STATEMENT: The exporter will complete a Processing Statement including the third country catch certificate reference and forward the Processing Statement to the EU importer.

STAGE 3: SUBMIT PROCESSING STATEMENT AND CATCH CERTIFICATES: The EU importer will submit the Processing Statement to the EU competent authorities of the destination/EU Member State(s) within the required time frame.

STAGE 4: OBTAIN EHC: The exporter will obtain the required Export Health Certificate (EHC).

STAGE 5: CONSIGNMENT TO BIP: The consignment is transported with the EHC (and other relevant invoicing, customs and packing documentation), to an EU Border Inspection Post (BIP) where it is approved (or rejected) and enters the EU.

*DOWNLOAD THE FULL LEAFLET*

Fish in UK waters*, land in UK and your catch is sent to EU

Fish in UK waters cover

STAGE 1: LAND CATCH IN THE UK: The vessel(s) will land it catch(es) as normal into a UK port.

STAGE 2: OBTAIN CATCH CERTIFICATE: The Master/agent/processor, as the exporter, will need to obtain a validated Catch Certificate(s) and forward to the EU importer. A multiple vessel consignment is permitted.

STAGE 3: OBTAIN EXPORT HEALTH CERTIFICATES: The UK exporter will obtain required Export Health Certificate(s) (EHC).

STAGE 4: SUBMIT CATCH CERTIFICATE: The EU importer will complete the declaration (section 11) on the Catch Certificate(s) and submit to the EU competent authorities of destination / EU Member State(s) within the required time frame.

STAGE 5: CONSIGNMENT TO BIP: The consignment is transported to an EU Border Inspection Post (BIP) with the EHC
(and other relevant invoicing, customs and packing documentation), where it is approved (or rejected) and enters the EU.

TO COMPLETE THESE PROCESSES, You need to register with the correct authorising authorities:

To export to the EU, you need to have an importer registered in the EU. There are additional requirement for the EU importer and information that you will need from them as the exporter.

Sea-based operations:

  • Arrangements for landing fish in non-EU countries such as Norway remain unchanged.

  • If a vessel wishes to access EU port facilities with no catch onboard, the vessel must notify the EU designated port within the required time frame.

  • Fishing in EU waters may not be permitted as UK vessels may no longer have access to EU fishing grounds. Please contact Marine Scotland for updates on access agreements.

Exceptions

  • In the cases of force majeure or distress, access to any EU Member State port is permitted but only for services strictly necessary to remedy situation.
  • Current fisheries management regulations under the Common Fisheries Policy have been retained into UK domestic law and will therefore continue to apply to your day-to-day operations.

To get more support on this process please contact your nearest Marine Scotland Fishery Office.

*DOWNLOAD THE FULL LEAFLET*

Holder

Stakeholder Group

The Marine Scotland EU Hub team recently established the Marine and Seafood Stakeholder Group on EU-Related matters, chaired by the Director of Marine Scotland Graham Black, which serves as a forum for engagement and exchange of information which will help inform our approach to the Brexit negotiations and to EU-related matters longer term, including the effect on the sector of potentially leaving the EU within and beyond the UK. If you would like more information on the remit and purpose of the group, please find attached notes of the first and second meeting of the stakeholder group:

Public Notice - Aquaculture

The Scottish Government must prepare a document notifying the Scottish Parliament of its intention to consent to devolved matters being included in the Statutory Instrument (SI).

This notification covers proposed amendments to fix deficiencies to regulations in relation to aquatic animal health and alien and locally absent species in aquaculture.

Public Notice - Fisheries

The Scottish Government must prepare a document notifying the Scottish Parliament of its intention to consent to devolved matters being included in the Statutory Instrument (SI).

The notification covers proposed amendments to fix deficiencies to regulations in relation to fisheries.

Further Support

Disclaimer

The Scottish Government seeks to ensure that this guidance is up-to-date and accurate. However, requirements may change. You should consider seeking professional advice before making specific preparations. This guidance does not constitute legal or professional advice and we cannot accept liability for actions arising from its use. The Scottish Government is not responsible for the content of pages referenced by external links.

*PLEASE CHECK BACK WITH THIS WEBSITE REGULARLY FOR UPDATES*