THE potentially disastrous situation facing farmers, fishermen and communities in rural Ireland, following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU has to be urgently addressed and prepared for, West Cork’s independent TD, Michael Collins said this week.
‘Ireland as a country is left in a very uncertain place following Britain’s decision to leave the EU last year,’ Deputy Collins said. We are well aware about the great difficulties we will face along the border for Northern Ireland and the economic implications it will have on us. However, In my own constituency of Cork South West, the fishing community is quite large and they fear that as soon as Britain formally leaves the EU, both Irish and European trawlers will be banned from British waters. This would result in reduced reach for our Irish fishermen and increased numbers of EU trawlers fishing in the already overcrowded fishing grounds off the south west coast.’
‘I have also had meeting with many farming organisations such as the IFA and ICMSA who are greatly concerned about the implications Brexit will have on the Irish Agri-industry, especially through our agri-exports,’ Deputy Collins continued. It is vital that our government strongly negotiate for fair deals with Britain in terms of farming and fishing to secure their economic future here. Brexit will do more harm than good to Ireland, whatever way it falls and we must prepare for this to ensure that our rural communities are not left, once again, facing a very uncertain future.’