Letter sent to Commissioner Damanaki 23rd November 2012
Commissioner Maria Damanaki
European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries
B – 1049 Brussels
Dear Madam Damanaki,
We are writing to you about the supposed reform of the Common Fisheries Policy and in particular it’s effect on Ireland and its fishing community.
From the enclosed paper you will see that Ireland got a “raw deal” on entering the EEC. It continues even though many will admit it was not intended to be forever. Previous “reviews” merely perpetuated and continued the same injustices. Ireland lacks political clout in the wider field.
Recent meetings on reform were dominated by PowerPoint presentations by Civil Servants and Commission Officials. Fishermen, the ordinary stakeholders who were present did not have a chance to present their views. These meetings were dominated by the professionals.
Ireland, a peripheral island with some of the richest fishing waters in the E.U. and a three thousand mile coastline, get a mere 4% of the valuable demersal quotas. This is meant to serve over 2,000 vessels while our so called partners take over one billion Euro per annum from what we call our water. Is it any wonder the European Union and the Euro were bottom of a table of Institutions that people trust? (copy attached). Why did Donegal, that great fishing county, twice vote NO to Lisbon?
We are an island, we are peripheral, we are far from the markets without any transport aid and we can no longer afford our partners to take in excess of one billion Euro benefit per annum without any benefit to us and a loss of fishing opportunities for our own fleet.
Ireland needs a greater share of the demersal quota and we look to you to support us. You know what it is like to be part of the smaller, less powerful nations.
We refer you to our website www.fishingforjustice.eu.
Donal O’Driscoll Tom Hassett