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United Kingdom / High Court, Queen’s Bench Division / CO/4796/2012

UK Association of Fish Producer Organisations v Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Policy area:
Agriculture
Deciding Body type:
National Court/Tribunal
Deciding Body:
United Kingdom / High Court, Queen’s Bench Division (Admin)
Type:
Decision
Decision date:
10/07/2013

Key facts of the case:

The claim concerns the allocation of fishing quota by the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs ("the Secretary of State"), in his capacity as head of the English fisheries administration. On 10 February 2012 the Secretary of State announced changes to the way in which the fishing quota was to be allocated for 2012 and 2013. The applicants sought to challenge this decision by judicial review. The Secretary of State reduced the quota to be allocated to English fish producer organisations. In essence this is a judicial review of a decision that deprives part of the English fishing fleet of a valuable entitlement, without compensation, to gift it to another part of the fleet. In doing this, the Secretary of State is said to have acted unlawfully. The quotas are allocated to member States in the EU under the Common Fisheries Policy, so European Union law applies in this area because of art 20(3) of Council Regulation (EC) 237/2002. Legal questions raised: that the Secretary of State acted unlawfully in defeating the legitimate expectations of the applicants, interfering with their property rights under art 1, protocol 1 ECHR and Article 17 of the European Charter, and acting in a discriminatory manner.