----- The Voice of Ireland's Fishing Industry and Maritime Community - Published Monthly, Established 1989 -----

June 2017 Issue - Vol 30 No.01

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Marine Times Newspaper
Editor: Mark Mc Carthy
Deputy Editor: Tom MacSweeney

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The Marine Times Newspaper is published by Marine Media Ltd.
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Art Kavanagh
Marine Finance Consultant

Losing the PR Battle

RTE did yet another Prime Time feature on the Foreign Workers issue which was disgustingly unbalanced.

May 2017 Issue Vol 29 No. 12

I heard criticism from Fishermen that some of their Leaders had declined invitations to appear but on this occasion Lads I believe that the Leaders of the POs were absolutely correct in avoiding what I can only describe as Tabloid Television where they would have been “ambushed” by the Prime Time Team.

Maybe I am missing something here?

Non EU Fishermen need Work Permits which are very difficult to secure. No More Permits are being issued? But our Fishermen are being accused of employing lads without a permit which cannot be got??

I believe that even in Ireland that an Employer has the option of deciding who he wants to employ and we may find that those Fishermen to whom Ged Nash appears so committed are not wanted by the Owners for one reason or another and therefore they have decided not to apply for Permits and employ them ???

I must be missing something here Lads !!!!!!

Shortly after the last Prime Time expose on the Fishermen there was a huge effort on the part of the Fishing Fleet to find the unfortunate missing Airmen from Rescue 116 and the sight of the mighty line of Super trawlers scouring the Sea Area off Mayo certainly made me proud.

Sadly Prime Time did not make it down to Mayo that day- reserving all of their energies relating to the Fishing Industry to potential negative stories.

We are losing the PR battle hands down Gentlemen and there is little or no understanding of what you do, the employment you generate and the good you bring to your communities despite everything……

In the recent weeks there was a highly publicised Recruitment Fair for the Agri Food Business held in the RDS where employment opportunities in that Sector were on show.

Surely the Fishing and Seafood Sectors should have been there at least to give young people an opportunity of exploring the potential of working in the Fishing Industry.

The more I discuss the possibility of recruiting young Irish people into the Fishing Sector with prominent Owners the more support I detect for the concept.

Such a campaign might end in total failure – but given that it did work before it is certainly worth a try- and it will only happen if the Industry lobbies the Training Authority.

I would share the concerns of Fishermen on the potential additional access now being offered to Non Irish Vessels in Irish Inshore Waters.

My concern is not directed at genuine NI owners availing of a facility- but I do have concerns about the concept of owners who are patently not NI Residents using convenience addresses to allow them to use NI licences to fish down here.

I imagine at parochial level it does not make for good relations between those fishing with Irish Licences who have paid full price for their Capacity and gone through the full rigours of the COP and whatever other regulatory conditions required and those who are fishing for a fraction of the cost.
In such circumstances the status of those Owners in terms of their Addresses and residency should be rigorously verified to establish validity.

The Licensing procedures in NI call for proof of Economic Link as they do down here .
As I write those attending the Seafood Global Expo in Brussels from 25 to 27 April will be getting ready to do us proud as they always do.

The Seafood Global Expo is huge and displays the significance of Seafood in the World Food Chain and our Industry competes with the very best in the Business.

It also suggests that despite clearly punching above our weight we are small fish in a large pool and this makes it even more important that we stick together with Catchers, Producers and Regulators pulling in the same direction.

I hope that everyone involved believes we are doing that ??????

Chares de Gaulle once said “ Only peril can bring the French together. One cannot impose unity out of the Blue on a country that has 265 different kinds of Cheese”.

We may not have 265 different kinds of Cheese lads but we do have too many factions – even within the regulation system trying to influence and govern a relatively small Industry.

We have here an Industry with such huge potential for development if it is allowed to grow. I always held the belief in my previous existence that it is possible to Manage a Business to death .

We almost achieved that!!!!!!