“Crazy” French won’t get access to UK waters if it’s No Deal Brexit, says Raab

Foreign Secretary, Dominic Raab has said British fishing waters will be protected by the Royal Navy in the event of a No Deal with the EU.

Speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, the Brexiteer said that while there wouldn’t be a “significant change” to the Navy’s “operating rules” they would “be involved in coastguard operations” to stop incursions by fishing vessels from the EU, particularly France.

He said: “Of course we’re going to exercise full control in the way I think people would expect, over our fisheries.”

And while Raab insisted the Government is still “striving” for a trade deal with the EU, the row over fisheries remains as heated as ever, even if it makes little sense from a French perspective.

“With the French, this is crazy to end up without a free trade deal when they’re making such aggressive demands on fisheries.

“If we leave without a free trade deal, they will have zero assured access to our fisheries.”

At the start of these trade talks, the Government had pledged to take back full control of UK waters. Expectations have clearly shifted however.

Judging by Raab’s comments, if a deal is struck, the EU will still retain some level of access. The question is, how big?