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.
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. NIFFs 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.