SSPO boss says PM Boris Johnson needs to “get his act together” over Brexit to avoid major disruption to Scottish salmon

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Industry leader Tavish Scott says “I think we will get hit in the face”.

In an interview with the Financial Times, SSPO Chief Executive Tavish Scott has strong words for PM Boris Johnson over the ongoing Brexit negotiations.

“Boris Johnson needs to get his act together,” said the former Scottish Lib Dem leader and Shetland MSP. “He’s got to decide what side he is on: is he on the side of business or is he on the side of politics?”

Scott said that “a deal is really important because the alternative is disruption to trade lasting, I think, not just weeks, but potentially a long, long time”, adding that “I think we will get hit in the face”.

SSPO boss Tavish Scott. PHOTO: SSPO

The salmon trade industry boss highighted that exports of chilled whole salmon would be subject to EU tariffs of two per-cent and those of smoked salmon to 13 per-cent.

But it was more the question of the lack of seamless trade, with potential for delays that was the bigger worry.

Earlier in the month, Mowi Scotland wrote in a blogpost that it and “the entire salmon sector have made it very clear to government that a deal is expected by deadline”.

Earlier in December Mowi Scotland Head of Sales Georgina Wright who has led the company’s Brexit transition team, as well as chairing the Brexit working group at the SSPO, said: “The most important thing to say is that we believe that we are as ready as we can be. As staff read this article, there will still be some uncertainty regarding a deal with the European Union (EU)”.

The EU and UK on Sunday agreed to continue Brexit trade deal talks into the week.