Fianna Fáil Senator Brian Ó Domhnaill says potentially disastrous proposals from the European Commission on fish quotas for the North West must be vigorously opposed by the Minister for the Marine.
Yesterday at the Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Senator Ó Domhnaill proposed that the committee reject the proposals from the EU Commission.
“Yesterday, I asked that the Committee to reject the communication from the European Commission and formally write to the Secretary General of the Department of Agriculture and the Marine and the EU Commissioner to inform them of our position.
“Next week the EU Council of Fisheries Ministers meets in Brussels and Minster Simon Coveney must fight tooth and nail to amend these proposals.
“Taken cumulatively the North West (Donegal) demersal fishing fleet would face a 19%, or €900,000, reduction in fishing opportunities. This will directly impact the ports of Greencastle and Killybegs.
“If the Commission proposals were to be implemented in their current form then the proposed overall quota reductions are in the order of €70 million, which Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) estimates could impact between 400-500 jobs in coastal areas around the country.
“The Commission proposals cannot be entertained as to do so would be devastating to the North West Fishing industry.
“Minister Coveney must argue against the EU proposals and protect the interest of the Irish fishing fleet which is now clearly under threat,” concluded Senator Ó Domhnaill.