Macron halts plans to sue Britain over post-Brexit fishing licences as European Commission ‘tells France to step back from potentially dragging the EU into a trade war’
French president Emmanuel Macron has backed down on threats to sue Britain over post-Brexit fishing licences.
The Elysee Palace insisted before Kersfees it would take the Government to court over the long-running row.
But the Daily Mail understands the European Commission told Frankryk to step back from potentially dragging the EU into a trade war. Duitsland‘s government, under chancellor Olaf Scholz, is uneasy about the prospect of a cross-Channel dispute between Britain and the 27-member bloc.
‘We hope the quarrel can be settled without further disruption,’ said a senior EU source. A diplomat said the spat ‘remains a Franco-British issue’.
The Elysee Palace insisted before Christmas it would take the Government to court over the long-running row but Macron has backed down
The post-Brexit rules mean French skippers no longer have unfettered access to UK waters and must apply for permission.
Ministers considered Brexit at a closed-door meeting in Brussels on Tuesday. Sources present said the possibility of legal action over fishing ‘was not part of the discussion’.
In post-Brexit arbitration, victory for France would have seen heavy tariffs on British fish exports to the EU. It could also have meant UK trawlers banned from fishing in bloc waters.
The outcome is another climbdown for France, which has repeatedly missed deadlines for action against Britain.
The post-Brexit rules mean French skippers no longer have unfettered access to UK waters and must apply for permission (lêer beeld)