Wednesday 16 October 2019

Creed battles to restore North-south fishery deal

fishing ROW

John Downing

John Downing

GOVERNMENT efforts to quickly restore a North-south fishery arrangement ahead of Brexit deadlines have been dealt a blow.

GOVERNMENT efforts to quickly restore a North-south fishery arrangement ahead of Brexit deadlines have been dealt a blow.

Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin combined to delay a final vote on the Fisheries (Amendment) Bill for two weeks to allow consultation with the fishing sector while both the Dáil and Seanad are on a break next week.

Agriculture Minister Michael Creed had warned senators that there is a "critical timeline" to pass laws to restore a deal allowing trawlers from the North and south to fish in a six-mile (9.6km) zone between Ireland and the UK.

Mr Creed, who is also responsible for fishery policy, told the Seanad it was "imperative" to move as quickly as possible with a draft law giving a legal basis for informal arrangements called "voisinage" - the French term for neighbourliness - in place since the 1960s. In 2016 Irish fishermen successfully took a case all the way to the Supreme Court to strike this down because there was no legal provision for it.

The Government hoped to have a new law voted through all stages of the Seanad yesterday ahead of any Brexit conclusions.

Irish Independent

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