Loughs Agency is an agency of the Foyle, Carlingford and Irish Lights Commission (FCILC). It was set up as one of the cross-border bodies under the 1998 Agreement between the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Government of Ireland.
The Agency provides sustainable social, economic and environmental benefits. We do this through the effective conservation, management, promotion and development of the fisheries and marine resources of the Foyle and Carlingford areas.
The Agency has a number of strategic and operational functions. These are set out in the North/South Co-operation (Implementation Bodies) (NI) Order 1999, the British-Irish Agreement Act 1999, the Foyle Fisheries Act (NI) 1952 (as amended) and the Foyle Fisheries Act 1952 (as amended).
Under the Agreement, the Agency took over the fisheries protection functions of the Foyle Fisheries Commission. It was also given an additional cross-border operational area in Carlingford and the added responsibility of developing aquaculture and marine tourism.
The governing legislation confers the following specific functions on the Agency:
• the promotion of development of Lough Foyle and Carlingford Lough for commercial and recreational purposes in respect of marine, fishery and aquaculture matters;
• the management, conservation, protection, improvement and development of the inland fisheries of the Foyle and Carlingford areas;
• the development and licensing of aquaculture; and
• the development of marine tourism.
We report to the North South Ministerial Council and our government sponsor departments – Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) in Northern Ireland and the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment (DCCAE) in Ireland. The Departments fund the Agency on an equal basis.