Galician mussel (Mytilus galloprovincialis) with designation of origin
Coastal Regulation reform jeopardizes more than 100 Galician companies from the maritime sector, Galicia warns
Monday, January 27, 2020, 04:30 (GMT + 9)
The head of the Ministry of Marine Affairs of Galicia, Rosa Quintana, warns that the proposal to modify the general Regulation of Costs promoted by the central government puts at risk "at least more than a hundred companies" of the sea-industry complex based in the Galicia coast, such as sewage treatment plants, shellfish farms, seafood cooking or canning factories. She also explained that this regulatory change can translate into a brake for the entire maritime-fishing sector of the community.
“This reform attacks the waterline of our sector because we have to think that all our mussel, clam or cockle production has to go through treatment plants, cooking or processing companies and, if they do not have legal security, shellfish harvesters would find it seriously compromised the placing of their production on the market”, summarized the fisheries minister.
Rosa Quintana recalled that the Galician Executive has been warning since April of last year of the legal uncertainty generated by the proposal of the State Government and stressed that Galicia defends a regulation that takes into account the viability and sustainability of the sea-related industries because the future of the sector relies on them.
In fact, the allegations presented by the Xunta to the legislative change request that the principle of legal security be guaranteed to the fullest and that the different operators affected are not exposed to arbitrary decisions and changes in criteria that may occur depending on the actual government and that influence the development of its activity.
Among the aspects that the Galician Executive considers harmful for the affected companies is that the maximum duration of the concessions would be very limited, to a maximum of 75 years including extensions. The Ministry of Marine Affairs defends that this term, of 75 years, does not include the concession but only the extensions, otherwise it would jeopardize the viability of companies that designed their business plans in accordance with the deadlines previously provided.
Another issue that the Xunta considers counterproductive is the fact that the requirements met for granting the concessions are reviewed again when the extension has to be decided. This measure would also complicate the future of numerous facilities by increasing the documentation, time and expenses necessary to renew or expand these concessions.
The reform of the regulation also establishes the duty to derive outside the maritime-terrestrial public domain area activities that can be developed elsewhere, something that, although technically feasible, would imply an increase of production costs, which could make some companies to lose profitability and become unsustainable.
Apart from the sea-industry complex, the regulation affects about 5,000 facilities of 80 coastal town halls, among which are from health centers to schools.