FARNET
Fisheries Areas Network

FLAG Factsheet

West FLAG

Official name: 
FLAG West
Country:
Region: 
Code: 
IE203
Programming period: 
2007-2013
2014-2020

Area

The FLAG West area comprises the coastal zones of counties Galway and Clare and has a considerable seafood industry, with over 450 registered boats, and over 350 fishermen. Targeted species include lobster, crab, crayfish, shrimp, scallops and oysters.

The FLAG also has the highest number of vessel ownership in Ireland with 4,2 owners per 1 000 inhabitants at present emphasising the importance of fishing and aquaculture to the FLAG West region.

Tourism is also important here as there are several locations, including the Burren, a unique barren landscape in County Clare, that have achieved UNESCO World Heritage Site status and attracts visitors. The entire coastline of this area forms a large part of the newly formed “Wild Atlantic Way” tourist trail. Furthermore, Galway, the largest city in the region, will be European Capital of culture in 2020.

The main challenges here include a declining population, unemployment, emigration, and the age profile of fishermen which is not helped by the difficulty of attracting young people into fishing. The distance from markets combined with poor infrastructure and the seasonality of the industry hamper growth in the sector.

Type of area:
Sea Basins:
Protected areas: 

Up to 80% of the coast line from Killary Harbour in north of FLAG area to the Shannon Estuary in south is classified as a Special Areas of Conservation (SACs).

Population
134 218
Surface area (km²)
4 510
Population density
30
Total employment in fisheries
704
Fishing: 
350
Aquaculture: 
139
Processing: 
215

FLAG strategy

FLAG West seeks to tackle unemployment and social exclusion in coastal communities. It is also hoped to attract young people to the fishing and aquaculture sector as well as developing marine tourism.

They also plan to develop the skill set of those involved in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors as part of a broader effort to enable diversification in these industries. Environmental protection is also something that the organisation seeks to keep in mind throughout the execution of the strategy.

Objective: 
Adding value, creating jobs, and promoting innovation along the fisheries chain
Priority: 
5
% of the budget allocated: 
60%
Supporting diversification
3
13%
Enhancing and capitalising on the environmental assets
2
8%
Promoting social wellbeing and cultural heritage
4
14%
Strengthening the role of fisheries communities in local development
1
5%

Funding

Total public budget allocated to the FLAG for 2014-2020: 
1 800 000
  • EMFF: 
    900 000
  • MS co-financing: 
    900 000
  • Sources of co-funding: 

    National Government 

Project examples

  • A Seaweed processing plant on an off-shore Island
  • Marine tourism projects
  • Infrastructure to develop marine tourism assets
  • Seafood festivals
  • Seafood trails and promotion

Calls for proposals

There will be calls two to three times a year. The closing date for 1st call is 15th March.

Expertise & cooperation

  • The FLAG has experience in small scale coastal fisheries, maritime heritage, and support to small scale processors
  • They area is interested in regional, national and transnational projects in maritime heritage, development of supports for SSCF, exchanging ideas and good practices, and sustainability of off shore islands
  • Upcoming projects still need to be discussed
Budget envisaged for cooperation: 
50000.00

Partnership

Accountable body: 
BIM West
Members of the partnership: 

Municipal Authorities, Regional Development Authority (Irish speaking), Educational/Training Board, Leader, Tourism Authority, Inshore Fishing Industry, Aquaculture, Seafood Exporters, Marine Tourism, Environmental Sector Coastal and Island Communities.

Number of individuals/organisations in partnership/general assembly: 
17
% of fisheries actors: 
41%
% of other (non-fisheries) private / NGO sector actors: 
29%
% of environmental actors: 
1%
Number of individuals on main decision-making body/board: 
17
% of public actors: 
29%
Number of contracted staff in FLAG: 
1,00

Map

FLAG Contacts

BIM West
 
BIM, Ionad Fiontar,
Carna
H91 YX64 Co na Gaillimhe
Ireland
FLAG Manager:
Mr. Séamus Breathnach
Phone:
+353 95 32028
Languages:
  • English (Mother tongue)
Publication date: 
31/08/2017
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