France's aquaculture and fisheries sectors receive US$840.4 million aid

France's maritime, fisheries and aquaculture industries will be supported by a programme worth an investment of about EUR774 million (US$840.4 million), Fish Information & Services reported.


The programme was adopted by the European Commission, with about EUR587 million (US$637.4 million) sourced from EU funding. According to Karmenu Vella, the EC's Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, it is tailored for the French economy and targets projects that are both "environmentally sustainable and economically sound".


"I am convinced that the package adopted today will make French fishermen and fish farmers more confident about the future and will allow the country's coastal communities to thrive," Vella said.


By funding development and modernisation, the competitiveness and sustainability of the industry will be improved through lower energy usage and higher innovation in the aquaculture sector.


In addition, aid will be given to producers to receive a better share of the value chain, with a focus on the extra costs faced by French outermost regions. Also given special attention are measures crafted to mitigate the impact of fisheries on the marine environment as well as protecting aquatic ecosystems and biodiversity.


Local development initiatives stand to benefit from the aid which will be combined with other EU regional-based funds. Significant amounts would be channeled to French public organisations which enforces the Common Fisheries Policy through inspection and control.


Those bodies will also collect fisheries' data to support management of both the fisheries and the aquaculture sectors.




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