Tuesday, 28 June 2011
Department of Agriculture, Marine and Food
Joe McHugh (Donegal North East, Fine Gael)
Question 434: To ask the Minister for Agriculture; Fisheries and Food if he will provide an indicative time for the announcement of quota for boar fishing; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [17471/11]
Simon Coveney (Minister, Department of Agriculture, the Marine and Food; Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
The Boarfish is a small pelagic species of fish which has in recent years become the target of commercial fishing by the Irish fleet. Until 2011 no Total Allowable Catch (TAC) or national quota had been determined.
At the EU Fisheries Council negotiations in 2010 when determining the TAC and Quota for 2011, of critical importance was ensuring that Ireland received a fair share of the Boarfish stock for 2011 and future years. Despite major efforts from certain other Member States for the stock to be shared out equally between five or more Member States, Ireland secured a 67.3% share of this stock for 2011 and future years.
The Irish quota for 2011 is set at 22,227 tonnes which was established on a precautionary basis as the scientific information to inform advice was limited. Data on the stock is currently being compiled to inform scientific advice which will be available later in the year. It is hoped that, based on the scientific advice, the TAC and quota will increase for future years.
I intend to give careful consideration to how this quota will be distributed amongst the Irish fleet for 2011. To this end, I requested proposals from the fishing industry on the matter. I have recently received these proposals and I am giving them careful consideration. I intend to decide arrangements, taking account of the views provided and the technicalities of this fishery, in the near future and in good time for the commencement of the boarfish fishery season.