Specifically, in the possibility of a no deal Brexit, from 29 March 2019, the majority of fish and fish products will need a catch certificate for imports and exports between the UK and the EU. This certificate affects also the fishermen who land fish directly into EU ports.

Also, catch certificates prove and make clear that fish has been caught under the established conservation and management measures. Furthermore, all non-EU countries are obliged to present their catch certificates when trading with EU.

In the possibility of leaving the EU:

  • UK exporters will be required to present a validated catch certificate to accompany their exports of most fish or fish products into the EU. The catch certificate does not include aquaculture products, such as freshwater fish, some molluscs, fish fry or larvae;
  • Importers will have to submit an import catch certificate to the Port Health Authorities or relevant fisheries authority to be checked before the estimated arrival time into the UK;
  • Exporters may also need to obtain supporting documents if the fish has been processed or stored in a country that’s not the flag state;
  • A new IT system to process and issue export catch certificates, and other supporting documentation, is being developed to help streamline the process. Exporters will receive full instructions on how to register and use the new system before we leave the EU. Import catch certificates will continue to be processed through the current paper-based system.

Moreover, in addition to the catch certificate and documents, businesses are required to follow additional procedures to comply with health and customs regulations, only in the event of a 'no deal Brexit'.

Concluding, the businesses and individuals that export fish and fish products, in order to create a catch certificate, they should be aware of the:

  • species;
  • vessel that caught it;
  • date landed;
  • weight of consignment.