Fainting in Coyles An occasional letter from the
Heart of Euroville
Friday, March 28, 2003
EU Fisheries boss struck by moment of Honesty
EU Obs report a glorious gaff (Surely stroke of honesty) yesterday in Norway. Jörgen Holmquist the EU's Director general of Fisheries (his predecessor Steffen Smidt was sacked under pressure from the Don last year) said that "In fisheries, Spain is hated and feared", realising what he had said he then desperately backpeddalled and then withdrew the word 'Hated' , "I retract ‘hated’. Let us say that they are criticized."
His purpose for being in Norway was to soften up public opinion for a future acession referendum in Norway expected sometime in th not too distant future.
Of course Norway is viatl for European interests - it has fish for starters, unlike Europe that has decimated its own stocks under the criminal Common Fisheries policy. And as he states pretty bluntly the Spanish would like to get their grubby trawlers all over Norways fish. It also has Oil, and (see pervious post) given Europe has now decided that North Sea oil is an ËU strategic asset, the Europeans would quite like to gain control of that too.
Recently Europe has been firing illegal tarrifs at Norway to force that country to allow Spanish fishermen access to its waters. The tariffs are against Norwegian fish products. This high handed colonial approach to Norway is not going down too well in the Fijords and I somehow doubt that the hapless Holmquist latest comments will have gone any way to allay those fears.