Written Answers. - Legislative Programme.

Ruairí Quinn

Question:

82 Mr. Quinn asked the Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources the Acts or sections or other provisions of Acts under the auspices of his Department or for the commencement of which his Department is responsible which have not commenced by reason of the fact that a commencement order has not been made; if it is intended to make such an order; if so, when; the reason for the failure to make such an order to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7166/02]

Section 13 of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act, 1997, dealing with the period for determination of applications for aquaculture licences, has not been commenced pending definitive clearance of the backlog of licence applications. The question of commencing this provision will be considered in due course.

The provisions of the Merchant Shipping (Investigation of Marine Casualties) Act, 2000, relating to marine casualty investigations have not been commenced. I intend to bring the relevant elements of the Act into operation in the near future to facilitate the early establishment of the marine casualty investigation board. I intend also that the new maritime safety directorate which I have established within my Department will advance as a priority the necessary arrangements to allow the commencement of the Adventure Activities Standards Authority Act, 2001, and the setting up of the Adventure Activities Standards Authority.

Ruairí Quinn

Question:

83 Mr. Quinn asked the Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources the proposed statutory instruments being prepared in, or under the auspices of, his Department; the proposed effect of each; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7181/02]

The work of my Department involves an ongoing programme of secondary legislation. The principal statutory instruments which are in preparation at present include the following: an order to require community fishing vessels, over 24 metres in overall length or over 20 metres between perpendiculars, to carry satellite based position monitoring terminals which are capable of automatically transmitting position reports to the fisheries monitoring centre, when operating in Irish waters; regulations to amend the Merchant Shipping (Tonnage) Regulations, 1984, as amended, in relation to the measurement of the tonnage of certain fishing vessels; regulations to amend the Merchant Shipping (Registry, Lettering and Numbering of Fishing Boats) Regulations, 1997, as amended, to take account of changes in the rules relating to the measurement of the tonnage of fishing vessels; regulations to effect various amendments of regulations introduced in connection with the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, MARPOL Convention; regulations to give effect to Annex IV and Annex VI of the MARPOL Convention; regulations to transpose into Irish law Directive 98/30 EC concerning common rules for the internal market in natural gas; Directive 99/105/EC on the marketing of forest reproductive material; Directive 2000/59/EC on port reception facilities for ship-generated waste and cargo residues and Directive 96/43/EC on the imposition of veterinary inspection fees for the inspection of food producing premises, inspection of food imports and border inspection.

The effective annual management of Ireland's quota restricted fisheries requires the making of statutory instruments on a regular basis. These are made following consideration of technical and administrative advice on the optimum management of fish stocks and quotas and in consultation with the fishing industry. Sixty-six such instruments were made during 2001 and a similar number is likely to arise in the course of 2002. In addition there is a continuing need for statutory instruments to enhance the level of safety at sea and on inland waters by ensuring that vessels meet accepted international and domestic safety standards. Statutory instruments envisaged include: passenger boat regulations; merchant shipping – fishing vessels – regulations; merchant shipping – small fishing vessel – regulations; fishing vessel – radio installations – regulations; fishing vessels – fees – order; load line exemption rules; safety of life at sea – SOLAS – convention regulations; Merchant Shipping (Safe Manning, Hours of Work and Watchkeeping) (Amendment) Regulations; and radio installation-survey rules.