By using this website, you consent to our use of cookies. For more information on cookies see our privacy policy page.

Text Size: a a
Home A-Z Index Subscribe/RSS Contact Us Twitter logo small white bird

Coveney seeks British support to protect Mackerel stocks at EU Council Meeting

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, today met the UK Fisheries' Minister, Richard Banyon, who was accompanied by the Scottish and Welsh Fisheries' Ministers, Richard Lochhead and Alun Davies.  During their discussions, the Ministers reviewed their current priorities on the fisheries' agenda and focused, in particular, on the negotiations currently underway in London on the share-out of the Mackerel stock, involving the EU, Norway, Iceland and the Faroe Islands.

The meeting took place in Luxembourg, where Minister Coveney is attending an EU Council of Agriculture & Fisheries' Ministers.

The Ministers discussed the ongoing mackerel negotiations in London, which are critical for their respective fishing industries, which together have the majority of the EU mackerel catch. Ministers agreed that the current unrestricted, irresponsible fishing of mackerel by Iceland and the Faroe Islands was totally unacceptable and would result, if continued at its current level, in the destruction of the stock.

The Ministers agreed to work together to secure an agreement on a fair share of Mackerel for Iceland and the Faroes.  Minister Coveney said "I appreciate that serious efforts are underway to reach agreement on the share out of Mackerel, which is Ireland's most important fishery.  I am very concerned that an agreement is not secured at a high cost as the share given to Iceland and the Faroes involves a reduction in Ireland's share.  The share agreed, therefore, must be fair and proportionate.  I welcome the outcome of today's meeting with my Ministerial counterparts to closely cooperate in the negotiations, in order to protect the interests of our fishing industry, which is dependent on a sustainably managed Mackerel stock."

Minister Coveney also said that the Ministers had agreed "to strongly demand trade sanctions, promised by Commissioner Damanaki, in the event that either Iceland or the Faroes are not prepared to stop their irresponsible fishing."

In addition to their discussions on the mackerel issue, the Ministers also discussed progress and their respective priorities on the reform of the CFP and the upcoming negotiations on TACs and quotas.

Date Released: 21 October 2011