Marine Fund Scotland (MFS) replaces the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF), following the UK’s exit from the EU. The EU scheme has supported salmon farming and processors in the past.
The Scottish Government writes that it has replaced the EMF with the MFS.
The MFS has a one-year budget of GBP 14 million, meaning all projects must be completed by 31st March 2022. The EMFF has committed over GBP 96 million to coastal communities across Scotland since it opened in 2016. It is now closed for new applications but will continue paying grants until 2023.
Fisheries Secretary Fergus Ewing said he wasn’t happy with funding from Westminister so far.
“Based on the EMFF budget for 2021-2027, and on our sea area alone, an equitable and evidence-based funding share would be GBP 62 million per annum,” he said.
“In setting up this fund we’ve been consistently clear that the funding provided by the UK Government must match the scale of Scotland’s marine responsibilities and the value of our marine industries. However, what has been provided so far for Marine Fund Scotland has been wholly inadequate and far more is needed. We’re also prevented from making long-term strategic investments as the UK Government will only provide funding on a one-year basis whereas the EMFF provided multi-year allocations,” said Ewing.