France Threatens to Ban UK Fishing Vessels Over License Dispute. France and the UK are headed into a deepening trade dispute over fishing rights in the English Channel. French officials are threatening to ban UK fishing vessels and their catch from ports in France, leading to a License Dispute.

French officials claim that the UK has failed to honour the terms of its post-Brexit agreement. This is in regard to licenses and access for European vessels. After Brexit, the crown dependency of Jersey – a British island in the English Channel – used its new authority to place restrictions. Mainly, this is for foreign-flag fishing permits for its local waters. It imposed a requirement that foreign (French) fishermen must show a history of prior operations in the area. In addition, they must upgrade to the latest trawling technology.

The move drew condemnation from French fishermen and the French government, which declared Jersey’s new rules “null and void.”  Dozens of French shellfish trawlers mobilized to Jersey’s main harbour, where they occupied the entrance in an act of protest. The Royal Navy deployed the patrol ship HMS Severn to help keep the peace.

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