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EU plan to bring sea angling into Common Fisheries Policy devastating blow

22 April, 2009

Sinn Féin North West EU Candidate Cllr. Pádraig Mac Lochlainn has this morning described efforts by the European Commission to bring ‘recreational fishing’ into the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) as devastating blow to the Irish fishing industry.

Mr. Mac Lochlainn said:

“There will be a vote today in the European Parliament on the Commissions plan to bring ‘recreational fishing’ into the Common Fisheries Policy. Sinn Féin MEPs will vote against this proposal as it will have a devastating effect on sea angling.

“Fishing quotas have been arbitrarily reduced over the years without appropriate consultation on the ground. The Irish fishing industry is suffering a death by a thousand cuts.

“If today’s proposal to bring recreational fishing into the CFP is successful it will effectively end sea angling which has been a critical avenue of diversification for the fishing industry. Angling has provided a lifeline to many fishermen, as boats need little modification for the dual usage of shell fishing and sea angling. Clearly any threat to sea angling will have a wider effect on the Irish tourism industry.

“Both the Irish government and EU institutions promoted diversification within the struggling industry yet now there is an attempt to shut down a key component of this strategy. Fishermen continue to hit a wall at every turn. I am calling on Irish MEPs to reject this proposal and for the government to step up and protect what is left of the Irish fishing industry.” ENDS

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