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Shape of Our Countryside to be Moulded by New Team 18 January 2007

A healthy mixture of continuity and fresh thinking has been welcomed by DAFF Minister Phil Gawne as he announced his Department’s new team. The Department of Agriculture Fisheries and Forestry’s new line up includes Dudley Butt MLC at Wildlife and Conservation and Animal Health, Brenda Cannell MHK at Forestry and Graham Cregeen MHK at Fisheries with the Minister continuing to look after Agriculture.

“This next five years will see significant changes in Government’s support for our farming and fishing industries which we must get right” stated the Minister. “We can not afford to make mistakes as we develop policies for vibrant and sustainable fishing and farming industries, as to do so puts at risk our beautiful Manx countryside and our ability to provide a plentiful supply of high quality food for our people.”

Continuity is evident in Agriculture as the Minister retains his control of this important sector being joined by previous Department member Dudley Butt who, in addition to continuing his role in Wildlife and Conservation, will be taking on the Animal Health division. “It is vital that we move swiftly to reform and restructure Manx agricultural with the potential loss of our protection of the red meat industry looming in 2010” explained Mr Gawne. “I hope that the continuity that Dudley and I bring will help the Department drive through the changes necessary to provide a positive future for farmers in the relatively short time available to us.”

East Douglas MHK, Brenda Cannell, is to lead the Forestry, Amenity and Lands division which is also undergoing a number of significant changes. The Minister was pleased that Mrs Cannell was appointed to DAFF as her considerable political experience is something that both he and the other two members lack. “Prior to the election the Department had two political heavy weights in the shape of David Cannan and Peter Karran and their experience is a loss to the Department. It is great that we will have Brenda’s knowledge and experience in the Department” said the Minister.

“I am also pleased to be able to welcome Malew and Santan MHK, Graham Cregeen, to his first Department. Graham is taking the lead in Fisheries at time of growing optimism in that industry. As with Agriculture we have excellent products in fisheries and significant potential to grow our markets in the future.” Mr Cregeen’s appointment completes the new DAFF line up.

Contact: Hon Phil Gawne MHK, Minister on 416221 or 685839

END

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