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Written Statement - The Official Launch of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund in Wales

Carl Sargeant, Minister for Natural Resources

Today sees the official launch of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) in Wales. The main purpose of EMFF is to help industry adjust to the reformed Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) and drive sustainable growth of our fisheries and aquaculture industries driving growth in our coastal communities.  

Priorities in Wales include;

  • facilitating CFP implementation, including the obligation to land all fish 
  • exploiting the potential of aquaculture in light of our targets to double production by 2020
  • improving safety of fishing vessels
  • encouraging partnerships between fishermen and scientific institutions 
  • Community-led local development 
  • increasing added-value for Welsh fish 
  • encourage the use of information technology within the industry.

EMFF in Wales will be operating as a growth fund based on a series of strategic interventions throughout the programme period. We will establish a group of industry representatives to help shape the specific priorities for developing the industry in Wales.  This strategic approach will allow us to focus the funds on areas of real importance to Wales.

Fishing remains one of the most hazardous occupations in the UK. In recognition of this, the first scheme to open under EMFF in Wales will be aimed at improving the health and safety of fishing vessels. Priorities for investment under this scheme will be developed over the coming weeks in partnership with the Welsh fishing associations and will be published shortly afterwards.