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Written Answers. - National Development Plan.

Wednesday, 6 February 2002

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 547 No. 4

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 61. Ms O'Sullivan Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan  asked the Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources Information on Frank Fahey Zoom on Frank Fahey  the progress made to date regarding implementation of the elements of the National Development Plan relating to marine and natural resources; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3499/02]

Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources (Mr. Fahey): Information on Frank Fahey Zoom on Frank Fahey Investment of almost €1.7 billion has been provided for under the National Development Plan 2000-2006 in respect of the marine and natural resources sectors.

Actual investment in 2000 and 2001 under these NDP areas amounted to almost €305 million. This level of expenditure represents 66% of targeted investment over that period. It reflects significant progress when account is taken of the delays in finalising the operational programmes and programme complements, the impact of the foot and mouth disease outbreak and the roll out of certain programmes and delay in obtaining EU state aid approval.

In the NDP some €916 million has been provided for forestry of which €688 million is co-funded under the CAP Rural Development Fund. A further €228 million has been provided under the regional operational programmes and the productive sector programme to improve existing woodlands, develop urban and amenity woodlands, re-establish forest plantations and to generally enhance forest infrastructure. Total investment to the end of 2001 under NDP forestry schemes amounted to €198 million, representing over 80% of targeted investment. Some €430 million is being invested in the seafood sector over the period of the plan. Actual investment to the end of 2001 in this sector included €30 million in fishery harbours, €2 million in seafood marketing and €3.6 million in seafood training. Coastal fishing communities will also benefit from investment under a number of schemes which have been launched recently or which are scheduled to be launched in the near future.

These include the €127 million fleet modernisation and renewal programme, the €87 million programme of investment in the development of seafood processing enterprises, the €27 million fisheries innovation and sustainability scheme and the €73 million programme of investment in the development of the aquaculture industry. I have recently announced the first tranche of projects under the fisheries innovation and sustainability scheme and the aquaculture development programme involving total investment of some €10 million and €12 million respectively.

Further investment to date of some €69 million under the NDP has been made in marine RTDI, [1583] commercial ports and coast protection programmes.

The EU recently granted State aid approval in respect of tourism measures under the NDP and I launched the NDP scheme for marine based tourism and leisure scheme earlier this week. I expect to launch the recreational angling scheme in the near future.


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