Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue TD, attended the EU Agriculture and Fisheries Council in Brussels. The agenda included an initial exchange of views on the proposal for fishing opportunities in the Atlantic and the North Sea in 2024, 2025, and 2026.
The EU shares the majority of the commercial fish stocks in the Atlantic and North Sea with Third Countries such as the UK and Norway. The European Commission, on behalf of the EU, negotiates with Third Countries on the setting of fishing opportunities for shared stocks. These negotiations began in late October and are currently ongoing.
Minister McConalogue said about 2024 fishing opportunities, “the negotiations between the EU and the UK and Norway on shared stocks are still ongoing, therefore we don’t have definitive figures for most of the stocks of relevance to the Irish fleet as yet. However, today’s Council is an opportunity for me to highlight Ireland’s priorities for these negotiations. In particular I emphasised the importance of securing a timely, fair and balanced conclusion to these negotiations. This is key to providing stability for our fishers and ensuring the sustainable management of shared stocks.”
“Ireland appreciates the importance of a timely conclusion to these negotiations but we cannot accept an agreement at any cost. I have consistently stated that any agreement with Third Countries must be fair and balanced and provide a level playing field.”
Minister McConalogue concluded, “we must ensure that the vital role played by farmers, fishers and foresters as the bedrock of the rural economy is recognised as we develop policies for rural areas. They are at the heart of rural and coastal communities.”