|Allocation of Scottish quotas
|Recognition and Management of Producer Organisations
|Scottish Quota Allocation Groups
|International Quota Swaps and Transfers
|Admission to, and movements from, the Scottish inshore ‘pools’
|Agreement between Scottish Government and POs to vary individual vessel licences under Landing Obligation (selected extract)
|Disclaimer to fish in Scottish non-sector ‘pool’
|Marine Scotland Contacts list
SECTION 1: INTRODUCTION
1.1 These rules are published by Marine Scotland. They are about the management of UK fish quotas for ICES Areas I, II, IV, VI, VII and associated areas and Vb (Faroese waters) that Marine Scotland is allocated by UK Government.
1.2 These rules should be read in conjunction with the UK Quota Management Rules for this year and the May 2012 Concordat on Management Arrangements for Fishing Opportunities and Fishing Vessel Licensing in the United Kingdom.
1.3 These rules are administrative and are mainly about the allocation of quotas apportioned to Marine Scotland by the UK. They will be reviewed annually by Marine Scotland, prior to the start of each quota management year (which begins on 1 January), in consultation with representatives of the Scottish fishing industry and other persons with an interest.
1.4 Marine Scotland reserves the right, after consultation wherever possible, to depart from these rules.
1.5 See Annex C for relevant Marine Scotland contact details.
SECTION 2: ALLOCATION OF SCOTTISH QUOTAS
Description of method
2.1 Quotas apportioned to Marine Scotland by the UK Government (see section 2 of UK QM rules), will be divided into 3 amounts assigned to groups:
- Scottish over 10m licensees in the membership of a UK Producer Organisation (“the Scottish sector”);
- Scottish over 10m licensees not in the membership of a UK Producer Organisation (“the Scottish non-sector”); and,
- Scottish 10 metres and under licensees (10mu).
Marine Scotland also reserves the right to retain quota centrally for other purposes.
2.2 The amount that Scottish Ministers determine will be available to the Scottish sector will in general be allocated to POs in proportion to the number of FQA units held for the stock on over 10m licences in the membership of a PO and Scottish dummy licences held by POs on 1 January of the quota management year.
2.3 The quotas available to the Scottish non-sector and 10mu ‘pools’ will be held centrally by Marine Scotland and managed (normally on the basis of periodic catch limits) in collaboration with relevant industry interests.
2.4 Additional quota obtained in-year by Marine Scotland will normally be distributed through the method outlined above. In-year reductions will be dealt with on their merits.
Further notes on allocation method
Attribution of FQA units on Scottish licence entitlements and ‘holding statements’
2.5 Holders of over 10 and 10mu licence entitlements and FQA replacement vessel holding statements may attribute FQA units to a PO for inclusion in the calculation of quota allocations for a specific year using an AFL 8 form. FQA units associated with entitlements or holding statements that are not so attributed will be counted towards the quota allocations for the non-sector or 10mu pool, at the discretion of Marine Scotland. Forms to facilitate attribution will be issued to the relevant parties by Marine Scotland in January of the relevant quota year.
Special Allocations (see section 4 for further details)
2.6 Marine Scotland will make Special Allocations:
- ICES Area IVab 10mu Handline Mackerel fisheries: No more than 1000 tonnes (inclusive of the amount apportioned to the Scottish 10mu group by MMO under the UK rules) will be allocated initially for landings by Scottish 10mu vessels authorised to fish by Marine Scotland for mackerel by handline in Area IVab. The allocated amount will be apportioned among separately managed fisheries in the Moray Firth, Shetland, Orkney and IVb areas. Marine Scotland will manage the fishery in collaboration with relevant interests. These amounts will be transferrable between fisheries where it appears to Marine Scotland that allocations to individual fisheries will not be taken in full.
- ICES Area VI/VII 10mu Handline Mackerel fishery: No more than 300 tonnes (over and above the amount apportioned to the Scottish 10mu group by MMO under the UK rules) will be allocated initially for landings by 10mu vessels authorised to fish by Marine Scotland for mackerel by handline in Area VI/VII.
Where, on the basis of predicted uptake, it appears to Marine Scotland that allocations for any of these fisheries will be not taken in full before the end of the season, any remaining quota may be reallocated to Scottish licensees. No action will be taken, however, without prior consultation with relevant 10mu interests.
2.7 The primary means of maximising uptake of Scottish quota (in so far as such is consistent with market conditions) is the facility for the swapping of quota between POs and groups. Marine Scotland also reserves the right, after consultation and having regard to an assessment of economic and biological impact, to recover from Scottish licensees and reallocate allocations where it appears unlikely that allocations will be caught in full. In considering any requests for reallocation, Marine Scotland will in addition consider whether those making the request have made genuine efforts to acquire additional quota through realistic swaps with those groups holding quota. Marine Scotland will also, where appropriate, have regard to the views of other Fisheries Administrations (FAs) in the UK, particularly in relation to POs that receive allocations from more than one FA.
Arrangements for particular quota stocks and fisheries
Western/North Sea Hake flexibility
2.8 Scottish POs may apply to Marine Scotland quota managers to transfer all or part of their Western Hake allocation to their North Sea allocation.
Area VII Skate flexibility
2.9 Up to 5 per cent of the UK’s initial quota of Skates/Rays in EU waters of VIa, VIb, VIIa-c and VIIe-k may be fished in EU waters of VIId and vice versa. This “of which” permission will be apportioned between POs and groups pro rata to Marine Scotland’s allocations for Skates/Rays.
Area IV / VI Monkfish flexibility
2.10 Up to 10 per cent of the UK’s North Sea Monkfish (Anglerfish) quota may be fished against its West of Scotland allocation. This “of which” permission apportioned to Marine Scotland will be allocated among POs pro rata to the landings of West of Scotland Monkfish recorded by Scottish vessels in their membership in the preceding three quota management years. Landings of WS monkfish (up to the flexibility amount allocated) may be re-attributed, upon request to quota managers in Marine Scotland, against uptake of the NS monkfish stock. Amounts of the flexibility quota may be transferred between POs.
Discard transfer quota
2.11 The discard transfer quota apportioned to Marine Scotland will be allocated to POs in proportion to the recorded landings in the main quota stock (i.e. the stock(s) subject to the landing obligation) in the calendar years 2013, 2014 and 2015.
2.12 Marine Scotland will make allocations to POs subsequent to the submission of a landing obligation management plan by each PO.
2.13 In relation to Scottish vessels 10 metres and under and vessels over 10 metres not in membership of a PO, any amounts of quota made available through the discard transfer will be made generally available through the centrally-managed ‘pools’ and will not be allocated separately from the main quota.
SECTION 3: RECOGNITION AND MANAGEMENT OF PRODUCER ORGANISATIONS
Recognition of POs
3.1 Further to paragraph 14 of the [2012 Concordat], Marine Scotland will be responsible for ensuring that Producer Organisations (POs) comply with the EU recognition criteria in relation to POs as set out in Article 14 of EU Regulation 1379/2013 of 11 December 2013.
Grant of sectoral quota management responsibilities to POs
3.2 Further to their recognition as a PO under EC regulations, Marine Scotland may also grant to a PO responsibility for sectoral quota management, thus allowing the PO to receive allocations of quota from Marine Scotland or one of the other Fisheries Administrations. The grant and continuation of sectoral quota management responsibility will be subject to conditions set out in section 3 of the UK rules, and any others that Marine Scotland may specify.
3.3 Marine Scotland has granted sectoral quota management responsibility to 10 Scottish POs :
Scottish Fishermen’s Organisation
West of Scotland FPO
Management of Producer Organisations
3.4 Where Scottish POs elect, in terms of paragraph 7.b. of the 2012 Concordat, to manage their allocations collectively, then Marine Scotland will be responsible for their management.
3.5 Alternatively, where POs in Scotland (and in any other part of the UK) elect to report separately for quota uptake purposes to each FA from whom it receives quota, then the Scottish vessels in membership will be treated as a Scottish quota allocation group, in terms of section 4 of these rules. In these circumstances, Marine Scotland will be responsible only for the Scottish vessels. From 2013, POs must apply to make use of this facility not later then 30 November in the year before the relevant quota management year.
Closure/opening of PO fisheries
3.6 Wherever possible, Marine Scotland will not close PO fisheries without prior contact with the relevant PO. Where already closed, fisheries will not be re-opened to POs unless so requested. Licence variations to effect fishery closures and openings will normally be posted weekly on the Marine Scotland website at 00.05 hrs on a Friday and have legal effect from 00.01 hrs on a Sunday. To take account of these timings, any requests from POs either to open or close a fishery should be agreed with Marine Scotland quota managers by midday on a Thursday if they are to take effect on the following Sunday.
Pelagic landing obligation from 2015
3.7 In managing their pelagic fisheries, POs will have regard to the requirements of the landing obligation (LO) from 2015 on both the uptake of their quota allocations and the continuing activities of vessels in the relevant sea areas as pelagic quotas become exhausted. Similar considerations will be taken into account by quota managers in Marine Scotland.
Variation of individual vessels licences from 2016
3.8 To assist POs during the implementation of the LO, those with Scottish vessels in their membership may enter into a (non-mandatory) Agreement with Scottish Ministers whereby they would have the facility to request Marine Scotland (via MS Compliance) to vary the licence of named vessels to prohibit them from fishing in a specified sea area (e.g. North Sea) when they have exhausted their individual allocation of a quota stock which they are obliged to land under the terms of the landing obligation. Such a prohibition, if agreed by Scottish Ministers, would remain in place until such time as the relevant PO submitted a further request to Scottish Ministers to reinstate the vessel’s authority to fish in the same sea area.
3.9 Any request from a PO to continue the effect of a variation under these arrangements beyond 31 December will require a fresh request to be made effective from 1 January of the following quota year. In the absence of such a request (which, in practice, must be submitted to MS by mid-December at the latest), the effect of a variation will lapse after 31 December.
3.10 The full Agreement (issued to all POs on 19 October 2015) sets out a range of responsibilities on both a PO and Scottish Ministers and explains how the administrative process will work. Extracts from the Agreement are at Annex A.
SECTION 4: SCOTTISH QUOTA ALLOCATION GROUPS
4.1 Section 4.1 states that FAs may establish ‘quota allocation groups’ which are only open to fishing vessels that they license.
4.2 Marine Scotland will establish at least 7 Scottish Quota Allocation Groups:
- There will be 2 whitefish groups. These comprise separate ‘pools’ of 10mu vessels and non-sector vessels (i.e. over 10m vessels not in PO membership; see section 6 for conditions of admission to this group). Landings by these vessels will be restricted by periodic catch limits prescribed in Scottish licences. Marine Scotland will decide catch limits and management in collaboration with relevant industry interests.
ii On a trial basis (2014 to 2017), the Scottish allocation of mackerel quota for inshore (10mu) handline fishing will be increased to a maximum of 1,000 tonnes for the North Sea and 300 tonnes for the West of Scotland.
- ii) All (appropriately licensed) Scottish 10mu vessels will be permitted to access the fishery during the trial period (after which there will be an evaluation involving relevant interests before allocation and management arrangements beyond 2017 are determined) ;
iii) IFGs and other groups and individuals with a relevant interest will be consulted about the management of the fisheries;
- iv) No new controls on equipment used in the line fishery will be introduced;
- v) There will be 5 pelagic (mackerel) quota allocation groups managed by Marine Scotland comprising 10mu vessels which are licensed by Marine Scotland and authorised to fish for mackerel in ICES Areas IVa and IVb and West of Scotland. These groups are:
West of Scotland
- vi) Recording of landings will be defined by vessels’ port of administration, viz.
– Shetland: FO Lerwick
– Orkney: FO Kirkwall
– Moray Firth: FOs Scrabster, Buckie, Fraserburgh and Peterhead
– IVb: FOs Aberdeen, Anstruther and Eyemouth
– West of Scotland (all Scottish FOs west of 4 degrees line)
Detailed management arrangements for these fisheries in 2016 and 2017 will be the subject of separate and period communications from Marine Scotland.
SECTION 5 : IN-YEAR INTERNATIONAL QUOTA SWAPS (IQS) AND TRANSFERS
Swaps initiated by POs managed by Marine Scotland
5.1 Further to section 6 of the UK QM rules, where a Scottish PO brokers an IQS with counterparts in a Member State, or where it is to be the donator and primary beneficiary, it will notify details to the MMO (FMC@marinemanagement.org.uk) and quota managers in Marine Scotland simultaneously. Provided UK authorities are satisfied that the IQS is in the UK’s general interest, Marine Scotland will make direct contact with the relevant Member State to obtain its agreement to the terms of the IQS. Once received, MMO will reflect the IQS in FIDES and POs will be informed of the completed swap. This communication will include details of all beneficiaries where this is available.
5.2 Proposals to lease or purchase quota from groups in other Member States will be subject to consideration by Marine Scotland in the first instance.
SECTION 6: ADMISSION TO, AND MOVEMENTS FROM, THE SCOTTISH INSHORE ‘POOLS’
6.1 Where a licensed vessel which is currently fishing in the Scottish non-sector ‘pool’ changes ownership, the new owner will require to apply to Marine Scotland if he wishes to continue to fish in the Scottish non-sector.
Any new applicant intending to fish for nephrops will be required to have a minimum of 100 FQA units of nephrops (NS units for vessels based in sea area IV and WS units for vessels based in area VI). Membership and issue of a Scottish non-sector licence will not be granted until these FQA units are attached to the licence. It follows, therefore, that any potential purchaser of a Scottish over 10m vessel who intends to fish in the Scottish non-sector should seek clarification with Marine Scotland (via their local Fishery Office) on the entry requirements before any purchase is concluded.
6.2 Marine Scotland may waive the requirement to acquire FQA units in the sole exception that the vessel owner does not intend to catch and land quota stocks. In such a case, the owner of the vessel will be required to sign an undertaking that he will not target, catch or land quota stocks (see example at Annex B). Marine Scotland reserves the right to review the membership of such vessels at any time and, if it is evident that the vessel has been catching and landings nephrops, to require the vessel owner to acquire nephrops units as per paragraph 6.1 above if he wishes to continue fishing in the Scottish non-sector.
6.3 Where a licensed vessel moves from a PO to the Scottish non-sector under the same ownership, or where a licence from a vessel in PO membership is to be placed upon a vessel fishing in the Scottish non-sector under new ownership, any previous arrangements to transfer quota deriving from the FQA units associated with the licence will not be valid for as long as the vessel remains in the Scottish non-sector and the arrangements set out in paragraph 6.1 above will apply.
6.4 A vessel which was in the Scottish non-sector ‘pool’ at 1 January may switch to fishing against PO allocations in-year, but no transfer of quota will be made to POs from the ‘pool’ allocation in such an event. No vessel fishing against a PO allocation from 1 January will normally be able to revert to fishing against the allocations for the Scottish non-sector ‘pool’ in-year.
6.5 Vessels fishing in the Scottish non-sector ‘pool’ may not lease in quota for their individual use but will fish against the periodic ‘pool’ catch limits set by quota managers in Marine Scotland.
6.6 An over 10m vessel whose FQA units have been removed from its licence (either in whole or in part) while in the Scottish non-sector under its existing ownership must reapply to remain in the non-sector.
10 METRE AND UNDER
6.7 A vessel which was in the Scottish 10mu ‘pool’ at 1 January, may switch to fishing against PO allocations in-year, but no transfer of quota will be made to POs from the ‘pool’ allocation in such an event. No vessel fishing against a PO allocation from 1 January will normally be able to revert to fishing against the allocations for the Scottish 10mu ‘pool’ in-year.
6.8 Exceptionally, a Scottish 10mu vessel accepted into membership of a PO and fishing under the management of that PO may acquire FQA units but, before re-joining the Scottish 10mu ‘pool’, must divest itself of any FQA units associated with its licence.
6.9 Vessels fishing in the Scottish 10mu ‘pool’ may not lease in quota for their individual use but will fish against the periodic ‘pool’ catch limits set by quota managers in Marine Scotland.
6.10 Where a 10mu vessel moves from one national ‘pool’ to another, there will be no quota transfer between administrations.
AGREEMENT BETWEEN SCOTTISH MINISTERS AND UK FISH PRODUCERS’ ORGANISATIONS
This Agreement outlines the relationship between the Scottish Ministers and UK fish Producers’ Organisations (PO) with Scottish-administered vessels in their membership in respect of action which may be taken from 1 January 2016 in the context of the landing obligation.
It is envisaged that the variation of individual fishing vessel licences may be necessary where a vessel in PO membership has exhausted its allocation of a quota stock which it is obliged to land under the requirements of the landing obligation. In such an instance, a PO may consider that a variation is required to prohibit the vessel from continuing to fish in a specified sea area either for a limited period of time during the quota year (1 January to 31 December) or for the remainder of the quota year.
Upon receipt of a written request by the PO, the Scottish Ministers (through Marine Scotland) will consider exercising their powers under section 4(9) of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967 to vary such licences in circumstances whereby the Scottish Ministers are satisfied with the PO’s conclusion that the licensee/vessel has exhausted its individual quota allocation of the relevant stock(s).
By signing this Agreement below, both parties agree to carry out their respective responsibilities outlined in Schedule 2.
Schedule 1 – Background
Schedule 2 – Outline of responsibilities of POs and Scottish Ministers
Schedule 3 – Notice of Variation: Removal of authority to fish (template)
Schedule 4 – Notice of Variation: Reinstatement of authority to fish (template)
Schedule 5A– Template e-mail for PO to request that the Scottish Ministers issue a licence variation to prohibit a named vessel from fishing in a specified sea area
Schedule 5B– Template e-mail for PO to request that the Scottish Ministers issue a licence variation to reinstate authority of a named vessel to fish in a specified sea area
Schedule 6 – Guidance on process (flow chart)
Signed (for/on behalf of PO)…………………………………………………………….
Producer Organisation ………………………………………………………………
Position of signatory ………………………………………………………………
Signed (for/on behalf of Scottish Ministers)…………………………………………….
Position of signatory in Marine Scotland ……………………………………………….
ANNEX A cont.
Outline of responsibilities of POs and Scottish Ministers
The PO (through its Chief Executive or designated official) :
- a) may, in writing, and at least one week after both parties have signed the Agreement, request that Scottish Ministers vary the licence of individual Scottish-administered member vessels to suspend the authority of the vessel to engage in sea fishing activities in specified parts of the sea where the member’s quota allocation of a quota stock subject to the landing obligation from 2016 has been exhausted. (In making such a request, a PO should bear in mind that variations issued under this Agreement will be posted to licence nominees. As such, it will take 48 hours from the day of posting for them to have legal effect).
- b) will provide in writing to Scottish Ministers (through Marine Scotland) the reason behind such a request together with confirmation that the vessel owner/licensee concerned is aware of the request and the circumstances behind it.
- c) may recommend the length of the period to which the variation shall apply for up to a specified date in any calendar/quota year (1 Jan to 31 Dec) and to specify the relevant parts of the sea to which the variation should apply.
- d) must ensure that, in exercising its responsibilities under these arrangements, any request which may cause Scottish Ministers to vary a licence is objectively justifiable, reasonable, fair and proportionate, takes account of all relevant considerations and risks and does not take into account any irrelevant considerations.
- e) must maintain a full record of all relevant documentation leading up to and pertaining to a request to Scottish Ministers to issue a licence variation under the terms of this Agreement and must make such record available to Scottish Ministers should they so request.
- f) must maintain an on-going list of all member vessels subject to licence variations under these arrangements together with reasons for such variations and must make such record available to Scottish Ministers should they so request.
- g) will review and, where appropriate, amend its Quota Management rules, Articles or Memorandum of Association or other relevant internal rules, so as to allow this licensing arrangement with Scottish Ministers to be carried out legitimately under the authority of these rules/articles should the PO chose to avail itself of the facility and, thus, indemnify Scottish Ministers against the costs of any litigation arising from a licence variation made under these arrangements which is based on a challenge to the conclusion in fact that the vessel in question has exhausted its quota allocation from the relevant stock(s).
- h) will provide to quota managers in Marine Scotland electronic copies of its Quota Management rules, Articles or Memorandum of Association or other relevant internal rules which may be amended by virtue of these arrangements.
Scottish Ministers :
- a) will retain their right to exercise their powers to vary licences (without a specific request from a PO) under section 4(9) of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967.
- b) will consider any request made by a PO in accordance with this Agreement and, if satisfied that it is appropriate to do so, vary a licence as requested by a PO either to remove the authority of a vessel to fish in a specified sea area (see Schedule 3 template) or to reinstate the authority of the vessel to fish in a specified sea area (see Schedule 4 template)
- c) reserve the right to refuse to vary a licence as requested by a PO under these arrangements and agree to provide the reasons for any such a refusal.
- d) reserve the right to request and be provided with copies of all relevant documentation leading up to and pertaining to a PO’s decision to request the variation of a licence under these arrangements.
Example of DISCLAIMER TO FISH IN SCOTTISH NON-SECTOR (see paragraph 6.2 above)
Address (please complete)
Date (please complete)
FAO FO (please complete for your port of admin) and Marine Scotland (Access to Sea Fisheries team)
I, the undersigned, agree to the conditional entry of my vessel (please enter RSS, vessel name and licence number) into the Scottish non-sector group on the basis that the vessel will only target non-quota species.
I understand that in the case that landings of quota species are made, Marine Scotland reserves the right to review my vessel’s membership of the Scottish non-sector.
Marine Scotland (Access to Sea Fisheries team)
Head of Quota Management – John Robb – Tel : 0131 244 6436 ; e-mail email@example.com
Quota Manager – Ross Parker – Tel : 0131 244 4766 ; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Effort Manager – Stuart Downes – Tel : 0131 244 6443 ; e-mail email@example.com
Head of Access and Control – Gordon Hart – Tel: 0131 244 4980 ; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Licensing Policy Manager – Vacancy Tel : 0131 244 6593 ; e-mail
Licensing Policy Officer – Heather Tibbetts – Tel : 0131 244 6466 ; e-mail email@example.com
Marine Analytical Unit (Stats)
Data Manager – David Turnbull Tel : 0131 244 6609 ; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org’
Data Executive – Patrick McDonald Tel : 0131 244 6641 ; e-mail email@example.com
Data Officer – Gail Burns Tel : 0131 244 6434 ; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Marine Scotland website – http://www.scotland.gov.uk/About/Directorates/marinescotland
 International Council for the Exploration of the Seas.