On 30 September 2020 the Framework Agreement on Fisheries between the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Kingdom of Norway was signed in London by representatives of the UK and Norway. On 19 October 2020 the Framework Fisheries Agreement was laid before the UK Parliament and published. The Framework Fisheries Agreement provides for annual negotiations on the exchanges of quota and access to waters (Arts. 3-4), as well as collaboration on control and enforcement measures (Art. 6), the licensing of vessels (Art. 5) and scientific research (Art. 1(h)). The Framework Fisheries Agreement recognizes the importance of zonal attachment as a principle of international fisheries management (preamble).
The Framework Fisheries Agreement applies to the EEZ (Art. 2) (or variations thereof) and, subject to domestic ratification, will enter into force 1 January 2021 (Art. 11). The Agreement applies to metropolitan UK only. According to the UK Government, it represents the first fisheries agreement for the UK ‘as an independent coastal state in 40 years’. Separate trilateral discussions will still be needed to establish trilateral governance arrangements for North Sea stocks (UK, Norway and the EU).