Monday, 6 April, 2020
A new £1.5 million support package for Northern Ireland’s fishing industry has been announced by the Department for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA).
The scheme will help the fishing industry during the COVID-19 pandemic, after social distancing measures and the collapse of the European and domestic fish markets have made trading virtually impossible.
The assistance will be provided over three months, with a maximum amount of total funding per ‘undertaking’ capped at around £104,000. It will be delivered via monthly payments, varying according to vessel size (overall length in metres (m)):
Vessels of overall length 28m and over are not eligible.
The vessel must be a fishing vessel registered in Northern Ireland, normally active during the period March to May. It must have had fish landings of at least £10,000 in 2019.
Vessels must be available to fish if there is a market for their product (ie this is not a ‘tie-up’ scheme).
DAERA will inform vessel owners about how to apply for the scheme and provide further details, including appeals, in due course. It is anticipated that the first payments would be made early in May 2020.