Sinn Féin TD for Wexford Johnny Mythen has challenged the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Marine on the lack of supports available for the fishing industry.
Teachta Mythen said:
“Fishers across Wexford and across the state are being totally left behind by this government and are at the mercy of the Brexit fallout.
“In the Dáil I raised with the Minister the urgent need to protect the scallop fishers following Brexit.
“From March 1st they will be forbidden by British authorities to land their catch at any British port. This will wipe out the industry, and the Minister must intervene immediately.
“I also outlined to the Minister that the cutting of fishing quotas to 15% is completely disproportionate and leaves Irish fishers with an extortionate bill to pick up.
“It is completely unclear what actions the Minister and his department are taking on this, leaving uncertainty and unnecessary worry on the fishers and their families.
“The chartered boat industry has been decimated since last March, yet they do not qualify for the Covid Restriction Support Scheme (CRSS). The Minister needs to address this gap without delay.
“Just because a boat is not made with bricks and mortar, does not make it any less of a business than a shop or a restaurant.
Finally, the Minister must get to grips with issues facing Inshore Fishers. They are considered self-employed, yet are obliged to pay harbour and marine charges, despite suffering huge drop in prices because of the collapse of the French and Spanish markets. The Minister must do more to protect the inshore fishing industry.”