29 JAN 2019

Ministry of Defence: Fisheries: Protection

Written Answers

Sarah Wollaston Chair, Health and Social Care Committee, Chair, Liaison Committee (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what steps he is taking to ensure the continued effective operation of the Fisheries Protection patrol in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

Mark Lancaster The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence

Ministry of Defence (MOD) officials are working closely with colleagues from across Government to manage the consequences of exiting the EU under a 'no deal' scenario. We firmly believe it is in the interests of both the EU and the UKto strike a deal.

That remains the goal on both sides and we are confident that this will be achieved. But it is the job of a responsible Government to prepare for all scenarios, so we have already carried out significant 'no deal' preparations for the unlikely event that we reach March 2019 without agreeing a deal.

As part of the Department's 2018-19 EU exit allocation from Her Majesty's Treasury, funding was provided to sustain an enhanced number of Offshore Patrol Vessels to ensure that the MOD has the ability to meet the anticipated additional Fisheries Protection requests from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs following the UK departure from the EU.

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