Deal on allocation of EU fisheries fund reached –

Deal on allocation of EU fisheries fund reached Published:  24 October, 2012

Simon Coveney

Following the agreement on how a fisheries fund of approximately €6 billion will be allocated among EU Member States, Irish Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Mr. Simon Coveney T.D. said he had made the case to maximise Ireland’s access to the fund.

It will provide significant funding to the seafood sector over the period 2014-2020, and enhance growth and jobs in this vital part of the economy.

Not for the first time, the Fisheries Council worked through the night to come to a final compromise on the way in which funds will be spent to develop a competitive yet sustainable fishing industry.

The fund, which will be used to support the new Common Fisheries Policy, (CFP) can be used for fleet modernisation, safety equipment, aquaculture development, adding value through processing, in addition to investment in new fishing gear to more effectively target stocks and assist in the reduction of discards.

 Speaking early this morning, (Wednesday) Minister Coveney stated that: “The Irish seafood industry is a hugely important part of the economy, providing employment for more than 10,000 people. It is my job to drive a hard bargain on behalf of fishermen and their families but also to put a policy in place which will protect and build our fish stocks. Negotiating access to finance through the CFP is essential to that effort.”

In previous years Ireland’s allocation from similar funds has been lower than warranted according to Minister Coveney who has been fighting to increase Ireland’s share and deliver support to a sector which has the potential to create further jobs and assist in Ireland’s economic recovery.