Bord Iascaigh Mhara will shortly submit an aquaculture licence application for a deep sea fish farm in Galway Bay, says Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney.
The site 6 km from Galway, and 1.5 km east of the southernmost of the Aran Islands, would produce 15,000 tonnes of salmon, worth about €103 million a year. The new farm would double Ireland’s existing 12,000 tonnes per year salmon output.
According to Mr Coveney, the site has been chosen by the Marine Institute after much research and working with environmental agencies within the Government.
If a licence is granted the Government will then tender it to the private sector to operate the fish farm.
Employment is projected at 300 and 400 jobs, and putting the fish cages in the water is a €50-€60 million operation.
The Government target is to build a number of such farms along the west coast and possibly the south-west and east coasts.
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