This petition was submitted during the 2017–2019 Conservative government

Petition Ban super trawlers from fishing in UK waters.

Margiris, the second largest trawler in the world, was spotted off the coast of the Isle of Wight at the end of September.

The UK Government should work internationally to ban these trawlers and remove them from UK waters.

More details

Weighing close to 9,500 tonnes, the mammoth commercial fishing vessel is designed to operate fishing trawls, which involves pulling a fishing net through a large body of water. It is thought to process 250 tonnes of fish a day.

Heavily regulated in some nations, trawling is widely criticised for its lack of selectivity, and the physical damage the trawl inflicts on the seabed. Australia has banned Margiris from operating in its waters.

This petition closed early because of a General Election Find out more on the Petitions Committee website

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Government responded

This response was given on 25 October 2019

While we are in the Common Fisheries Policy, the Margiris is legally entitled to fish in our waters. The Marine Management Organisation has inspected the vessel and found it compliant with the CFP.

Read the response in full

While we are still part of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) EU registered vessels such as the Margiris are legally entitled to fish in our waters. The vessel was inspected by the Marine Management Organisation on 2 October 2019 and found to be fishing in compliance with the CFP.

After leaving the EU, the UK will become an independent coastal state under international law and we will have the right to decide who fishes in our waters and on what terms. Any decisions about giving access to our waters for vessels from the EU, or any other coastal states, including trawlers such as the Margiris, will then be a matter for the UK to decide.

After we leave the EU, we expect to hold annual negotiations with the EU and third countries on access and fishing opportunities. We’ve been clear that all vessels will have to comply with UK rules.

The Government remains fully committed to sustainable fishing, including ending the wasteful discarding of fish. Our full approach is set out in the Sustainable fisheries for future generations White Paper, and 25 Year Environment Plan.

Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs