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Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009

Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967

53.This Act and orders made under it regulate fishing for, and landing of, sea fish and the commercial use of sea fish.

Section 4: Licensing of fishing boats

54.Section 4 of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967 and legislation made under that section prohibit fishing boats from fishing for sea fish in certain areas within British fishery limits without a licence. This section transfers to the MMO the function of the Secretary of State in relation to the granting of licences. The function transferred includes the administration (granting, variation, revocation, suspension) of licences. This section also ensures that licences previously issued by the Secretary of State are treated as though they were issued by the MMO.

55.Section 4 also provides for the MMO and the Scottish Ministers to make arrangements to exercise functions on each other’s behalf. This is limited to licensing functions under section 4 of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967.

Section 5: Restrictions on time spent at sea: appeals

56.Section 4AA of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967 establishes the Sea Fish Licence Tribunal. It provides for an appeal to this tribunal in relation to certain provisions in fishing boat licences that restrict the amount of time that a vessel may spend at sea. The fishing boat licence must be varied to give effect to any decision of the tribunal. Section 5 provides for the MMO to be subject to this duty to vary a licence in respect of licences that it granted, or that the Secretary of State granted.

Section 6: Trans-shipment licences for vessels

57.Section 4A of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967 and legislation made under that section prohibits a vessel within British fishery limits (except the Scottish zone) from receiving, without a licence, fish that is trans-shipped from another vessel. This section transfers to the MMO the functions of the Secretary of State in licensing vessels involved in the trans-shipment of fish.

Section 7: Regulations supplementary to sections 4 and 4A

58.This section is supplementary to sections 4 and 6 and flows from the transfer of functions of granting fishing boat licences from the Secretary of State to the MMO. Where secondary legislation has been made to set out the procedure for granting licences, any existing references to the Secretary of State in that legislation are to be treated as references to the MMO.

Section 8: Exemptions for operations for scientific and other purposes

59.Section 1 of the Sea Fish (Conservation) Act 1967 prohibits the landing of certain descriptions of sea fish below a certain size. Section 9 of that Act creates an exemption to this prohibition in the case of fish landed for the purposes of scientific investigation.

60.This section transfers to the MMO the functions of the Secretary of State relating to the authorisation of fishing operations that are conducted for these purposes.

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