BIM reopens scheme to help Ireland’s inshore sector adjust to post-Brexit trading conditions


A scheme to support Ireland’s inshore fishing sector to adjust their business to the post-Brexit market has reopened for applications today.

Ireland’s inshore fishing sector is made up of some 1,800 vessels, that catch a range of fish and shellfish species while typically operating in waters close to the coast. The sector had exported up to 90% of its catch, however, the advent of Brexit and associated new fishing agreements, have had an impact on export trends, as accessing or transiting through the UK market is now more complex.

The scheme is based on recommendations contained within the final report of the Seafood Taskforce that was established by Minister McConalogue. The new scheme is being administered by Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) as recommended in the report.

Under the scheme, depending on the size of their boat, grant aid of between €2,700 and €4,000 is available for fishing vessel owners on completion of a tailored training programme.

Under the scheme, fishing vessel owners with boats up to 8 metres in length can apply for grant aid up to €2,700, while those with fishing vessels up to 18 metres in length can apply for grant aid of up to €4,000. For vessel owners to be eligible, they must show that they were actively fishing between January and December 2022.

To receive their grant, applicants must complete the BIM inshore census. Doing so will allow BIM to collect detailed information on the inshore sector and its contribution to coastal communities, enabling state agencies to better direct supports to the sector through grant aid and training. It will also help facilitate the inshore sector to advocate more effectively on its behalf.

Applicants must also complete at least one of five online training courses designed to provide the sector with skills to adapt to the new market realities post-Brexit.

These short courses are designed to support vessel owners in areas including how to strengthen your seafood business, how to care for your catch, how to master the live holding of shellfish,  and how to use social media to reach new customers.

The scheme is open for applications until July 13, 2023.

For more information or to apply, visit here