Tuesday, February 19, 2013

New CFP deal will aid Kilmore Quay fishermen -Kelly

Cllr Anthony Kelly has said that the under-siege fishing community in Kilmore Quay will benefit from a new clause pushed into the report on the Common Fisheries Policy by a Sinn Féin MEP last week.  Sinn Féins Martina Anderson successfully amended the CFP report to include the so called '1976 Hague Preferences' which will now seek to ensure special recognition for Irish fishing communities and their quotas.

Cllr Kelly said;

"The amendment of the CFP report to include the 1976 Hague Preferences will mean that Ireland will get a top-up on their quota in return for sharing the Irish fishing grounds with other member states if the CFP is amended to include the report's findings.  These fishing grounds are too big for our fleet to manage by themselves anyway, and if our fishing communities benefit financially from this top up, then it has to be welcomed as a progressive move."

"EU regulations governing Irish fishing have brought the industry to its knees.  It has been estimated that the commercial value of Irelands fisheries between 1975 and 2010 was €210 billion.  Over this period Irelands share of this was €17 billion while our net loss was €184 billion." 

"Ireland has roughly 20% of the EUs waters but one of the smallest fishing quotas.  Even in our own waters Irish fishermen have only a 7% quota.  Spain has a 34% quota and can regularly land abundant catches of monkfish and other varieties long after the quota has been reached for Irish fishing vessels.  The amendment introduced by Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson will finally deal with righting this gross imbalance."

"Also contained in the new report is the provision to end the policy of discarding.  The United Nations  Food and Agricultural Organisation estimates that 7.3 million tonnes of fish is annually discarded globally.  Shockingly this is 8% of the entire global catch."

"This deal is in no way finalised and the negotiations will be tough, but at last there is light at the end of the tunnel for Irish fishing communities.  It's now time for Minister Coveney and MEPs from this state to join the likes of Martina Anderson in fighting for the rights of small fishing communities like Kilmore Quay."

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