Wexford shellfish boats unable to land in UK

By Dan Walsh

From October 1st Bivalve/Mollusk shellfishing boats can no longer land their catch in the UK, meaning that they must go to Belgium or France to land their catch, according to Wexford Independent Deputy Verona Murphy, who stated; “There are seven boats affected by this and all of them are owned in Co. Wexford.”

DEPUTY VERONA MURPHY

Speaking from New Ross, Deputy Murphy has outlined the impact of this change. “Boats being unable to land in the UK means hours upon hours of extra sea journey time to land catch in EU ports and then more time to get the catch transported back to Ireland for processing. These fishers not included as part of the Trade and Co-operation agreement because they are non-quota. They receive no compensation but are gravely affected.”

Deputy Murphy continued; “There are seven boats affected by this and all of them are owned in Co. Wexford. The extra costs imposed because of this change will cause major hardship for our hardworking fishers trying to make a continued success of their businesses.”

Deputy Murphy concluded by proposing a solution. “Those affected by this must be supported with a liquidity fund to allow for the costs incurred because of the change and to allow time for them to identify mainland EU processors as we have only one processor in Ireland. The way those affected have been treated is unacceptable but symptomatic of the way in which our government treats our fishing communities. When it comes to Northern Ireland the protocol can be kicked down the road, yet we are enforcing it to the ninth degree. This has created an unlevel playing field. Government must think that if no one mentions it, it will go unnoticed, but untold damage is being done.”

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