Sinn Féin’s Agriculture spokesperson, Martin Ferris TD has given a “guarded welcome” to the inshore fisheries package announced by Minister Simon Coveney today.
Deputy Ferris said:
“Any initiative for the inshore fishing industry is to be welcomed, but we will wait and see.
“We are glad to see that the Minister has introduced some consultation with the establishment of the National Inshore Fisheries Forum and a regional network of forums in each of the Fisheries Local Action Group regions.
“However, we are expecting that when the Minister consults with people in the industry he will find out that the sum of €1 million allocated will not be adequate. He claims it is to provide training and assistance for sustainable, environmentally friendly fishing practices, an enhanced v-notching programme, gear and equipment and improvements in standards of quality and hygiene.
“It seems like it will be the miracle of the loaves and fishes, if the Minister can adequately fund all of that on what his statement says is ‘up to €1 million’.
“However, we welcome the initiative to provide assistance to fishermen who lost pots during the exceptional weather last winter and give the initiative a guarded welcome.”