Tuesday 2 March 2021
Home EU Scotland furious to exclude seed potatoes in EU agreement

Scotland furious to exclude seed potatoes in EU agreement

In the trade agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union, no place has been set aside for enforcement of the British export of seed potatoes. This is a setback for Scottish potato growers who were counting on unhindered continuation of their 20 percent export to the European mainland.

Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon is outraged and calls the outcome 'disastrous'. She accuses the British government of selling off the Scots in the EU.

The seed potato is a valuable export product for Scotland. The sector is estimated at more than 124 million euros. The wet, cold climate lends itself to complex cultivation. As a result, the Mediterranean countries are an important market for Scottish farmers. One fifth of exports are destined for Europe.

As the reason for excluding the crop, the European Union states that the British regulations 'are not in line with Europe'. The EU wants to avoid less British rules leading to unfair competition. The Netherlands and Belgium are also important suppliers of seed potatoes

In the denouement of the Brexit trade treaty, fishing became the ultimate bet. This is going to be a major blow to Dutch and European fishing. In five and a half years, the size of that fishery in UK waters will be reduced to an average of 75%.

The Dutch MEP Peter van Dalen (ChristenUnie) is vice-chair of the European Parliament's Fisheries Committee: “The agreement now made means that new negotiations on fisheries must be started within a few years after the transition period of more than five years. That is extremely fast. A fishing company must be able to plan ten years in advance for a solid business operation with the associated investments ”.

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