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Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009

Section 194: Size limits for sea fish

498.Section 1 of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967 enables the Ministers (now the Secretary of State and the devolved administrations) to make an order to set minimum size limits for sea fish. Orders under this section may: prohibit any person from landing sea fish below a specified size; prohibit the sale of sea fish below a specified size; and prohibit the carriage by a relevant British fishing boat of sea fish below the specified size. Orders under this section may set different limits for different areas or for fish of different sexes and may restrict the landing by any person of parts of fish below the size limit set for that species.

499.Section 1 does not currently allow for a maximum size limit or for a size range to be set by an order or for the carriage restrictions to apply to a vessel not covered by the definition of a relevant British fishing boat. Section 1 is amended to provide for all the current powers available under orders made under that section to apply to any requirements as to size, rather than minimum size limits only, and for the prohibition on carriage to apply to all relevant British vessels. The effect of these amendments is to allow Ministers to make an order setting a minimum or a maximum size limit for sea fish or a size range outside which no fish may be landed, sold or carried.

500.The amendments made by this section extend to England and Wales only and the powers to make orders on the basis of these amendments would be exercisable by the Secretary of State as regards England and the Welsh Ministers as regards Wales. Since this section does not extend to Northern Ireland, amendments have been made to remove Northern Ireland fishing boats from the coverage of certain of the measures.

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