A Donegal TD has called on the EU to step up and support the Irish fishing sector by putting certain supports in place.
The Fianna Fáil spokesperson on Agriculture Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue, said: "Like every other sector, the fishing industry is experiencing massive turbulence as a result of the economic fallout of the coronavirus.
"The sector is determined to continue supplying fresh fish to the Irish and EU market in these crisis times but it is essential that the EU provides the supports necessary to ensure that it can do so over the coming weeks."
He said that it was crucial that the Minister for Agriculture ensures that the EU Agri Fish Council, which meets today, moves to put necessary supports in place.
He said that the sector needs a storage aid scheme for produce that is struggling to find a market at the moment to ensure that a floor is held under prices and that fishing can continue to take place. He added a temporary cessation package, is necessary, so that some boats fishing for species for which there is not currently a market can tie up temporarily.
Deputy McConalogue outlined that funding for producer organisations to adapt marketing and production plans so that fish supply can be managed in a way that ensures that the needs of the markets for fresh fish are well managed.
“Our fishing sector has a key role to play in coming weeks in ensuring that fresh fish is supplied for the domestic and EU market in particular. Fishermen and all in the sector are determined to play their role in ensuring that this happens but it is now essential that this work is backed up by the necessary supports being put in place at EU level,” Deputy McConalogue said.
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