“Two of Ireland’s biggest fisheries, mackerel and prawns, are hugely dependent on continued historical access for Irish fishers to waters under British jurisdiction,” she said.
“Ireland´s fishing fleet has only had historic access to two fishing grounds; British waters and Ireland´s own fishing grounds and there are very reasonable fears that with Brexit the Irish fishing sector will lose up to 50% of its access to fishing grounds, with no possibility of mitigation by moving to other fishing grounds.
“One of the many harmful effects that Brexit may bring, especially a hard Brexit, is the impact of the changes to fishing communities across Europe. The European Commission has warned fishers who operate in British waters that they risk being pushed out in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
“With the publication of the draft Brexit agreement this may be avoided but any agreement will need to pass through the British parliament. The Irish government and the EU must work to ensure that fishing vessels from outside Ireland do not crowd into Irish waters as a result of Brexit. This would have grave consequences for the Irish fishing sector and the communities depending on it.
“The Irish Government must put in place specific safeguards and use their voice in the European Council to ensure that this possibility does not become a reality.”