A seven-week public consultation proposed by the National Inshore Fisheries Forum is underway and will feed into a strategy for Ireland’s inshore fisheries sector until 2023.
Marine Minister Michael Creed (2nd left) is joined by Jim O’Toole BIM chief executive, Trudy McIntyre, RIFF (SE) and Kieran Calnan, BIM chairman at the launch of the Inshore Fisheries Strategy public consultation
Established in 2014, the NIFF and six regional groups (RIFFs) support initiatives that seek to cultivate ‘a more sustainable, profitable and well-managed inshore fisheries sector’.
Launching the consultation, marine minister Michael Creed said this was an opportunity for stakeholders to contribute their views on the first strategic plan for the sector:
“This strategy will frame the work of the inshore forums…and will provide a clear direction for the development of the inshore sector.”
The inshore sector comprises fishing boats of less than 12m LoA and represents more than 80% of Ireland’s fishing fleet, predominately active within six nautical miles of the Irish coast.
Inshore Fisheries Forums were established to provide a united voice for the inshore sector by encouraging stakeholders to discuss fishing issues and to develop commonly-supported initiatives. IFFs are financed under the Inshore Fisheries Conservation Scheme through Ireland’s EU Structural and Investment Programme 2014-2020 and part financed by the European Maritime Fisheries Fund.
The NIFF is supported by a network of six RIFFs comprising fishermen, environmental interests, marine leisure, marine tourism and other marine-related stakeholders.