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Western Isles MP Angus B MacNeil has urged the UK immigration minister to speak to west coast skippers who are struggling to man boats.


The Home Office has refused to reintroduce a scheme to allow foreign fishermen to fill crew shortages in the Western Isles’ trawler fleet.


Angus MacNeil said it was “frankly ridiculous” for the Home Office it would “entrench a reliance on non-EEA labour.”


He said the UK government’s inaction is “hurting” fishing industry all over the Scottish west coast.


“This affects Northern Ireland too and I would expect the Tories now to make these sensible concessions to communities in Scotland and Northern Ireland which would increase domestic tax revenue and also enable people to send money home to the Philippines.


“Skippers need crew and they have people from non-European Economic Areas ready and willing to work – but the UK government continues to turn a blind eye and recklessly ignore the crisis hitting our fishing industry.”



Crew shortages “hurting” fishing industry

5 July 2017