U.K. Says EU Fishing Deal May Not Be Finalized Until December

A fisheries agreement between the U.K. and European Union may not be finalized until December, five months later than scheduled, Environment Secretary George Eustice said.

The subject has become a sticking point in negotiations over the future relationship between the two sides. Britain wants to restrict EU vessels’ right to fish in British waters, making it conditional on annual negotiations, while the EU has made continued access a precondition of any wider trade deal. They had originally aimed to agree on terms by the start of July.

A delay is “not unusual” in such agreements, Eustice told the House of Lords EU Environment Committee on Wednesday. He said the EU’s annual fisheries negotiations with Norway often goes into “extra time.

“We really could go quite late in terms of getting the final agreement,” Eustice said.

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