Scottish Sea Fisheries National Discussion Paper

Closed 12 Jul 2019

Opened 4 Mar 2019

Results updated 7 Jul 2022

Overview of Responses

On 4 March 2019 the Scottish Government published a national discussion paper on the Future of Sea Fisheries Management in Scotland. The discussion paper was intended to generate debate and ideas on how Scotland's fisheries can be most effectively managed in the future. The paper was intended to reach out to a wide range of stakeholders to seek their input into a proposed future fisheries management strategy, with a focus on developing priorities and policies.

The discussion phase ended on the 12 July 2019. The dialogue included a series of successful stakeholder events and 120 written responses were submitted from across the stakeholder landscape. The breakdown was as follows: 47 responses from industry, 16 from environmental NGOs, 31 individuals, 6 from Local Authorities and Local Government, 7 from various Representative Groups and 1 joint response from the Statutory Nature Conservation Bodies. Twelve responses were submissions noted at stakeholders' events including two Twitter Q&A events which attracted considerable interest.

1.2. Next Steps

At the start of the discussion phase we acknowledged that determining the best ways to manage Scotland's fisheries in the future would be a long term process, with the subsequent planned strategy being delivered over an extended timeframe. Following the analysis of the responses we are now in the position to set a clear pathway for the next stage.

For the short term we intend to focus on three main work streams:

  • Publishing our response to the discussion paper and the points raised by stakeholders, providing a clear policy intent where appropriate.
  • Publishing a strategy document, setting out our overall approach and high level objectives, which will reflect those in the UK Fisheries Bill, where relevant.
  • We will consult on individual policies and / or regulations, as required and at any appropriate point which will draw out our approach and set our direction of travel as a world leader in responsible and sustainable fisheries management.


Published responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.


The Sea Fisheries National Discussion Paper sets out, and seeks your views on, a vision for the future management of Scotland’s marine fisheries, how we will conduct ourselves in the International arena and what our guiding principles shall be.

Why your views matter

We want to use the expertise and experience of all our stakeholders to help us develop a world-class fisheries management system to ensure the long term sustainability of the Scottish industry and therefore it is important to ensure that everyone who wishes to take part uses the opportunity to ensure their voice is heard.

Read the discussion paper.

What happens next

A period of analysis will use the outputs from the national discussion to draw conclusions and develop firm policy proposals. These will then be subject to a public consultation in Autumn 2019.


  • Business, Industry and Innovation
  • Communities and Third Sector
  • Economy
  • Environment and Climate Change
  • Public Sector
  • Marine and Fisheries