Brexit´s impact on Northern Ireland´s fishing industry to be investigated
Thursday, January 11, 2018, 01:40 (GMT + 9)
The Northern Ireland Affairs Committee of the British Parliament will lead an investigation into Brexit and its impact on the Northern Ireland fishing industry, in order to assess how this sector will affect the UK's exit from the EU.
The study will investigate divergent areas with the government of the United Kingdom, as well as the creation of new strategies to improve the sector. It will also pay special attention to EU fisheries policies that help the crews of the trawling fleet, which could later be used by the UK Government to develop its independent fishery policy.
The Commission president, Andrew Murrison, thinks that the Brexit will have "great implications" for the fishing industry and the communities that depend on it. And while he believes there will be real opportunities for growth, he argues that understanding the complexities will ensure the proper arrangements for Northern Ireland, especially, "but also to do the right thing by the Republic of Ireland as an enduring member of the EU."
The British Government has announced its intention to abandon the Common Fisheries Policy and the London Fisheries Convention, a reciprocal agreement covering fishing within the 6-12 mile limit in Western European waters.
Restoring access to coastal waters off the Republic of Ireland for the Northern Ireland fleet has been a recurring problem over the years, and even led to a court case.
The fishing industry in Northern Ireland supports about 900 jobs, mainly in Kilkeel, Portavogie and Ardglass. Its fleet, made up of more than 300 vessels, landed 29,000 tonnes of fish worth GBP 41 million in 2016.
Prawn make up most of the catch followed by scallops, herring, mackerel and crabs.
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