More than €30 million is to be invested in the fishing industry over six years in a fund that will help protect aquatic wildlife, biodiversity and combat climate change, according to Economy Minister Silvio Schembri.

The majority of the funding, some €21.8 million, will come from the EU as part of its European Maritime Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund (2021-2027).

Some of the investment will target fishing vessels, train professional fishers and improve fishing ports.

It will also help protect aquatic biodiversity while funding research and awareness campaigns on the impact of climate change on marine life and the environment.

Schembri said that these funds are tied to an essential sector of the Maltese economy.

“Since the beginning of Malta’s history, the fishing industry has always been an important one for our livelihood; by means of these funds we will ensure that projects that help to make this sector even more sustainable are implemented,” he said.

Virginijus Sinkevičius, the EU's commissioner for environment, oceans and fisheries, said the programme would "enable key interventions for effective and inclusive management of marine protected areas and tackle the issue of marine litter".

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