Asked by leading Brexiteer and businesswoman June Mummery if Boris Johnson knew “how bad the deal is for coastal communities”, the former Downing Street and Vote Leave adviser responded: “He sort of knew he was selling them out.” In the tweet on Wednesday evening, Mr Cummings added: “But he hides such knowledge from himself.
“He’s not a simple character. It’s why ‘lying’ is tricky to pin on him. He just doesn’t know what truth is.
“He only ever cares about himself.”
The Conservative Party was contacted for comment.
Ms Mummery has previously been highly critical of the Government’s Brexit deal, which Mr Johnson reached with the EU at the eleventh hour last December.
Last week, the former Brexit Party MEP responded to a video of Mr Johnson speaking about his Plan for Jobs, saying: “You stole job opportunities from coastal communities.”
“If we had taken back control of waters, 1,000s of jobs could’ve been created from fishing,” she claimed, adding that for every one job at sea there would be eight on the land.
“Wind farms don’t create local jobs. So where are all these jobs?”
In a further reply, Ms Mummery tweeted that Mr Johnson “lied to coastal folk to get his lazy backside in parliament.”
As per the Brexit agreement, 25 percent of the EU’s fishing rights in UK waters will be transferred over to the UK from 2021 to 2026.
However, the majority of that – 15 percent – will be transferred in 2021, with a further 2.5 percent transferred over in the following four years.
This “adjustment period” allows EU fishers time to get used to the new arrangements. They have until June 30, 2026, after which there will be annual negotiations to decide how the catch is shared between the UK and the EU.
By 2026, it is estimated that UK boats will have access to an extra £145m of fishing quota every year.
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Particularly French fishermen have reacted angrily to the new agreement.
Two Royal Naval river-class patrol boats, HMS Severn and HMS Tamar, were sent to Jersey in May, after French fishermen threatened to blockade Jersey’s harbour in protest over a perceived lack of access to its waters.
According to a parliamentary report released in November last year, the total number of fishermen in the UK was around 12,000 in 2019, down from around 20,000 in the mid-1990s.
Meanwhile, the number of fishing vessels in the UK fleet has fallen by 32 percent since 1996.
The UK is a net importer of fish and related products, with net imports of around 358,000 tonnes in 2019, worth £1.7 billion.
In 2019, the fishing industry contributed £446 million to the UK economy, accounting for roughly 3.4 percent of the nation’s agricultural output.
However, a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) signed between the UK, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein in July as part of the Government’s post-Brexit Global Britain campaign was advantageous for Norwegian fishermen, according to a House of Lords report.
While the FTA would benefit businesses in Norway, it would also “reduce costs” for the UK fish processing industry, which employs 18,000 people, the report by the House of Lords European Affairs Committee said, and “ultimately for consumers”.
With tariffs on the imports of shrimps and prawns gone, the committee estimates that British consumers will be saved between £1 million and £2.7 million a year.
Norway agreed to cut certain tariffs for imports of UK fish feed from 10.5 percent to zero, which would also save £4.1 million annually.