On 14th June 2021 the UK Government announced its intention to disband the Scottish Seafood Exports Taskforce, a combined UK and Scottish Government taskforce which was set up at the urging of the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation (SSPO).
The SSPO disagree with the decision, announced by David Duguid MP, UK Government Minister for Scotland and are calling for the Taskforce to continue.
Tavish Scott, Chief Executive of the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation (SSPO) said: “The Taskforce has brought both Government’s together to deal with the shambles of Brexit. Progress has been made and we thank Ministers and officials who have worked to help the export of Salmon. However salmon exports still use a paper-based system, with higher costs, greater bureaucracy and less absolute certainty over delivery times. We need a fully digital, online export system to replace paper and exporters still lack a set timetable. That is why Mairi Gougeon MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy, is right to call for these regular meetings to continue and we support that.
“On supplier declarations, there has been progress but we have asked that as this is a risk based assessment, companies who comply with the requirements can return to the pre 1st January system. We await the government’s help with that. Finally, the shambles over HMRC export figures continues. HMRC appear a law unto themselves. No matter how many times Ministers and civil servants tell them to correct their erroneous export figures, HMRC ignore everyone. All exporters would be very grateful if the UK Government sorted this out.”
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