MEPs to visit South-west of England –

MEPs to visit South-west of England Published:  08 September, 2005

A GROUP of MEPs are due to visit the South West of England next week to study the region’s fishing industry and learn more about an innovative approach to fisheries management being developed there.

Invest in Fish South West will host the European Parliament Fisheries Committee visit to the area on Tuesday, September 13. The committee will visit Newlyn as part of a fact-finding tour. Invest in Fish aims to show the committee the strengths of its project and to stress the importance of future EC support for the project’s fisheries management plan, including any potential funding necessary to implement it.

Project chairman Sam Lambourn said the European Commission is responding positively to the idea of more regionally focused fisheries management strategies and more multi-stakeholder involvement in creating such strategies in Europe.

“Invest in Fish South West is working hard to find ways fisheries could be best managed in this region,” he said. “However, in order for this plan to succeed it must be welcomed and implemented by the Commission; which includes providing the necessary funding.

“We’ll take this opportunity to illustrate the strength of the project’s decision making process – Invest in Fish South West involves a diverse group of professionals who share a fundamental hope and interest in the sustainability of the fishing industry and the wider marine environment.”

During their visit, MEPS will tour Newlyn fish market, guided by Seafood Cornwall, where they’ll be shown a range of more than 40 species of fish that are landed at the harbour daily. They will have the opportunity to speak to fishermen as well as take a two hour trip aboard a beam trawler hosted by W.Stevenson and Sons Ltd. UK Minister for Nature Conservation and Fisheries and Exeter MP Ben Bradshaw is due to host a dinner for the committee on Monday evening.