Given some confusion reported by many of you in relation to separate work/research being undertaken to inform preparations for COVID-19 interventions for the Fishing industry and supply chains.
To be clear the first phase and priority for Marine & Fisheries is a scheme to deliver the most urgently required financial assistance to where it is needed. Some announcements already made at a Welsh and UK level will provide opportunities for support for; merchants, buyers & processors for example.
The work being undertaken as mentioned above will inform later interventions if necessary. However, the priority remains to get support to where it is most urgently needed given the immediate nature and impacts of the restrictions placed on the shellfish markets together with the lack of resilience in the fishing fleet due to the already significant economic impacts enforced by the most prolonged and severe weather for over 20 years.
Whilst specific fisheries options are yet to be confirmed at a UK/Welsh level I have asked Mike Dowell (Deputy Director M&F) to provide a brief update (below) that given the circumstances underlines what I have said above.
I hope this update will provide some comfort in these unprecedented times whilst importantly recognising the efforts of officials in progressing this critical work.
Please get in touch with me if you need any further details.
Take care and look after each other.
Jim (CEO WFA-CPC)
Email from Mike Dowell (Deputy Director Marine & Fisheries, Welsh Government) 20.03.20
We’ve spoken regularly this week, and it has been really useful hearing your thinking on ways forward to support the sector at this time. Given the continual wave of announcements of funding and support from both UK Gov and Welsh Gov, the team here have had to analyse each announcement whilst at the same time looking at fisheries specific responses which I know are of most interest to you. I can’t give any detail on these fisheries specific options in writing right now but I can tell you that work is continuing at pace and we should catch up on Monday to take stock.