Jersey ‘isn’t backing down’ on fisheries in says expert
Jayne Adye was commenting in the wake of the furore over the Jersey Government’s decision to issue 41 fishing licences to French fishing boats, including limitations to how many days they are permitted to fish in the Crown Dependency’s waters. Annick Girardin, the country’s Minister for the Sea, swiftly and controversially responded by threatening to cut power supplies to the island.
Roughly 60 French fishing boats also staged a protest which was only dispersed after Boris Johnson dispatched two Royal Naval vessels amid fears of a blockade.
Ms Adye, the director of Get Britain Out, said the episode highlighted not only the bloc’s questionable intentions, but also Britain’s undue reliance on external suppliers.
As things stand, the UK Government has plans for 25 percent of the nation’s future electricity needs to be supplied by underwater power cables running under the sea from mainland Europe by 2024, she suggested.
President Emmanuel Macron’s France – and the EU in general – wants to exploit the UK, said Ms Adye
Annick Girardin issued her threat in the National Assembly
Ms Adye explained: “The EU is clearly willing to exploit any advantage they believe they may have, and the UK’s dependency on importing goods for critical infrastructure is worrying.
“Whether it has been the EU’s threats to cut off vaccine supplies to the UK, or the threat last week to the people of Jersey that France would cut off power to the island if they did not give French fishermen unfettered access to their waters, there can be no doubt the EU will continue to use every opportunity they can to gain leverage over the UK – no matter the questionable morality.
“Why have successive UK Governments failed to protect the interests of this country by simply handing over critical infrastructure projects to the highest bidder?”
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson
Ms Adye added: ”Priority should always have been given to UK companies – including help where necessary.
“Surely vital power plants in this country should be built by the UK, rather than willingly opening the door to potentially hostile foreign Governments controlling a vast proportion of our energy supplies?”
Neither were the UK’s problems restricted to its tetchy post-Brexit relationship with Brussels, Ms Adye stressed.
She said: “Removing China from our 5G network has been a start, but this does not go far enough.
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French boats protested off the coast of Jersey last week
HMS Severn was dispatched to Jersey last week
“Decades of pandering to China, throughout our EU membership, has allowed their grasp to become tighter and tighter around the UK’s economy.
“Now we must examine everything far more carefully, and turn away deals which might not end up in the interests of the United Kingdom.
She asked: “Why does our Government continue to push forward with such obviously doomed strategies. Is it ignorance or naivety?
“If we are to regain our lead position in the international community as Global Britain, then we must seriously consider how we can develop more of our own infrastructure and end dependence on self-interested foreign powers.
EU countries dependent on UK waters
“If we fail to do so, we will forever be held back by our concerns about possible reprisals and we will be unable to hold respect and legitimacy on the world stage.”
In a further development in a saga of fishing access to UK waters, France was yesterday widely reported to be ready to delay a European Union financial services deal with Britain over the issue.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s official spokesman commented: “We’re taking a consistent, evidence-based approach to licensing EU vessels using information supplied by the European Commission.
“This is another example of the EU issuing threats at any sign of difficulties instead of using the mechanisms of our new treaty to solve problems.
Xi Jinping, China’s President
“We have always been clear that an agreement on financial services is in the best interest of both sides.”
Speaking in France’s National Assembly, Ms Girardin said: “In the Brexit deal there are retaliatory measures. Well, we’re ready to use them.
“Regarding Jersey, I remind you of the delivery of electricity along underwater cables.
“Even if it would be regrettable if we had to do it, we’ll do it if we have to.”
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: UK Feed