At the first launch of the Ocean Wealth strategy this week, Simon Coveney, TD, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine outlined the significant progress made to date in implementing the Government’s 2012 Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth: An Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland.

The Government plan has been assisted by the Irish Marine Federation. IMF Board member Brian O’Sullivan from Tralee, County Kerry contributed to the marine tourism aspect of the strategy.  The Dublin Castle launch of the initiative was attended by IMF board members Paal Janson and Bernard Gallagher from Dun Laoghaire marina in County Dublin and Greystones marina in County Wicklow respectively.

The Minister said “today’s event brings together some of the most important figures in the Marine sector, and places it firmly in the spotlight as an industry with a significant economic and social contribution to make. It provides us with an opportunity to take stock of what has been achieved since Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth was published and to consider how to meet future opportunities and challenges”.

Minister Coveney said that “I have spoken today about the many initiatives which have flowed directly or indirectly from HOOW. Integrating our marine policy is leading to significant results already but this is not a short term strategy. The target of doubling the percentage of GDP contributed by marine sector is an ambitious one but is more than achievable. Reaching those targets will depend on public and private sectors working collectively to make our ambitions for the sector a reality. We must be bold and radical in our ambitions for the sector and open to a range of new ideas”.

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