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Quota swap secures additional UK scallop effort

The UK scallop fleet now has an extra three days to fish before the end of December after a swap of quota secured additional effort.

Under the EU’s Western Waters regime, fishing effort by UK vessels targeting scallops is limited in ICES Area VII – the western areas of sea around Scotland, Wales, England including the Channel and south west towards France and Spain.

As part of the scheme, vessels measuring over 15 metres in length were limited to 36 days at sea for 2012, which from 16 December was increased to 39 days.

This was secured following a swap of monkfish quota with the Republic of Ireland, sourced through the industry-led management group and taken forward by fisheries administrations.

The swap comes at a time of year when market prices for scallops are increasing. It will help the majority of UK scallopers affected by the Western Waters regime to keep fishing to the end of the year without reaching their days at sea limits, with the UK staying within its effort ceiling under the regime.

More information on the management of scallop effort in Area VII is available from the section of our website on the Western Waters regime.