Dáil debates

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Ceisteanna - Questions - Priority Questions

Fishing Industry

9:50 am

Photo of Simon CoveneySimon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael) | Oireachtas source

It would impact on the gross tonnage and engine power kilowatt issue. I am happy to listen to new ideas and new approaches if it can be done within the confines of the Common Fisheries Policy. I tell farming organisations if we can do things better within the rules they should speak to me about it and we will happily look at it. We are also trying to do this with the inshore fleet at present. Many new initiatives are coming from the new regional forums on supporting the inshore fishing fleet. I suggest this is done through the producer organisations, but if suggestions are made outside of them by all means send them in and I will look at them. I do not want to create an expectation we can go down the road of safety tonnage, which is what was proposed in the past, because safety tonnage is specifically not facilitated in the new Common Fisheries Policy. There are many smart people in the fishing industry who know the rules and parameters because they are frustrated by them a lot of the time. If there are proposals whereby we can make sensible changes that do not involve increasing overall capacity or gross tonnage let me see them. We would certainly look at them and either respond to them or explain why we cannot do so.


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