Wednesday, 20 January 2021

Questions (695, 696)

Joe McHugh

Question:

695. Deputy Joe McHugh asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if he will provide details of the changes in fisheries policy and its impact on Irish fishermen as a result of the Brexit deal; the communication there has been to ensure fishermen are kept up to date on these new policies; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2416/21]

View answer

Joe McHugh

Question:

696. Deputy Joe McHugh asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the timeframe for the implementation of changes to fishing policy and its impact on Irish fishermen as a result of the Brexit deal; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2419/21]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 695 and 696 together.

The EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement will, unfortunately, have an impact on our fishing industry. However, this impact would have been far greater had the Barnier Task Force agreed to UK demands or had we been in a no-deal scenario which would have seen all EU vessels barred from UK waters and subsequent displacement into Ireland's fishing zone.

Last week, I published a Preliminary Analysis of Transfers of Quota Shares on the gov.ie website which details quota transfers for Ireland across the different stocks. This compares the quota shares allocated to Ireland in 2020 and the corresponding new quota shares for 2021-2016. The Deputy will see from this document that reductions in the Annexes to the Agreement are graduated over the 5.5 year period of reciprocal access, but the largest part of the reduction, 60%, is between 2020 and 2021.

The timeframe for changes to fishing policy as a result of Brexit is multi-faceted. In respect of quota transfers from Ireland/EU, these will be phased in between the 1st of March 2021 and July 2026. However, some other changes for Irish fishing vessels have come into effect from 1st January 2021, such as changes in requirements to access UK fishing waters and requirements for vessels to make certain regulatory submissions when landing into UK ports.

Other changes such as health requirements for exporting fish consignments from Ireland to the UK will come into effect from 1st April 2021, and the requirement for entry of such fish consignment exports into the UK through a Border Control Post will come into effect from 1st July 2021. Details of any changes of an operational and technical nature have been posted on the SFPA website.