Fine Gael Senator Seán Kyne has expressed concern at the exclusion of all but two Irish ports for UK trawler landings.
Following Brexit, UK trawlers are now classed as being from a third country and can only land catches at international ports in Ireland which are Killybegs and Castletownbere.
Commented Galway-based Senator Kyne: “These new restrictions regarding the landing of catches by UK trawlers are making the Brexit situation even more challenging for Irish coastal communities, particularly those involved in sea-food processing.
“From speaking to the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, I understand that the new restriction is due to a long-standing regulation that vessels from third party countries can only land at international ports.
“This is unacceptable and places jobs and livelihoods at other ports around our coast, such as Rossaveal in Connemara and Greencastle in Donegal, at risk. Every effort needs to be made to change this rule so that UK trawlers can land catches at other ports.
“Of further concern is the decision to only include registered ‘Producer Organisation boats’ from fishing in UK waters, agreed under a list supplied by Irish Authorities as part of the final Brexit deal.
“I understand from Minister McConalogue that a list had to be agreed quickly in the context of securing a Brexit agreement but that further lists are being prepared by his Department to include other boats.
“There can be no delay in these new lists being prepared so that as many Irish boats as possible, from the fishing communities around our coasts, can fish in UK waters. It is vital not only for the Irish trawlers and fishers but also for the local companies in the sea-food processing sector,” added Senator Kyne.