France looks to launch litigation proceedings against the U.K. to obtain the remainder of post-Brexit fishing licenses it says it is entitled to, Secretary of State for European Affairs Clément Beaune said on France 2 Thursday.
“If the British don’t respect the agreement, they won’t be able to access freely to our market in the future,” Beaune said. “[Starting on] January 4, we will meet with European commissioners to define the procedure and the measures we need to take.”
This comes as France is still requesting around 60 fishing licenses to allow French boats to fish in U.K. waters after Brexit — 7 percent of the remaining fishing licenses France says it is entitled to according to the Brexit trade deal.
Fishing licenses have been the main point of contention between the two countries for months, with France accusing Britain of not granting all the authorizations agreed under the deal, and the U.K. alleging some French vessels lack the proper paper work required to qualify for a license.
After Paris threatened with EU legal action and retaliation, Britain issued 23 additional licenses on December 13, adding up to the 93 percent of fishing licences obtained by France.