Monday, December 02, 2013

EU to ban fish imports from Belize, Guinea and Cambodia

EU to ban fish imports from Belize, Guinea and Cambodia

Three countries banned and three more warned in first major sanction against nations that allow illegal fishing operations
Maria Damanaki, Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries on illegal fishing worldwide
Maria Damanaki, the EU’s fisheries commissioner, said the three countries could not claim that 'the fish caught under their flag or in their coastal waters is sustainable.' Photograph: Julien Warnand/EPA
Fish imports from Belize, Guinea and Cambodia are to be banned from the European Union, and three more countries have been warned their imports are in danger, in the first major sanction against countries that allow illegal fishing operations to carry on under their countries' flags.

The three countries to be banned were warned last year that the European commission was preparing to end imports of their fish and fish products, because of concerns that they had failed to take action over piracy and illegal fishing. It is the first time imports have been banned as a result of the widespread global trade in landing fish for which vessels do not have the correct fishing permits. EU vessels will also be banned in fishing in the waters of the three offending nations.
On Tuesday, the commission also showed a "yellow card" South Korea, Ghana and Curaçao. The three countries will have to show progress on tackling pirate fishing in the next six months, or their imports will also be banned.

The sanctions, announced by the European commission on Tuesday, will have to be ratified by the EU's council before they come into force next year.

Maria Damanaki, the EU's fisheries commissioner, said: "The heart of the problem is the lack of effective control on their fleet. How can they claim in these circumstances that the fish caught under their flag or in their coastal waters is sustainable?"

Countries are able to license vessels from other nations to fly under their flags – the so-called "flags of convenience", which can mask the real origin of a vessel. Belize has long been targeted by critics of the "flag of convenience" rules. The EU's willingness to tackle these opaque rules has sent a warning to countries that have lax rules on flags of convenience that their vessels will no longer be able to operate with impunity, green campaigners said.

Tony Long, director of the Ending Illegal Fishing Programme at the Pew Charitable Trusts, said: "The EU is a huge market for seafood, so it is critical that the council should act to ensure that only legally caught fish are reaching consumers. While the three countries cited do not represent the whole picture, we are pleased that the European commission is continuing to investigate other countries known for their lax enforcement of illegal fishing."

The EU imports around 65% of the seafood consumed. Its imports from three countries to be banned amount to less than €10m a year, on official figures, but the three "yellow card" countries amount to well over €200m a year.

Steve Trent, executive director of the Environmental Justice Foundation, said the EU's move showed "leadership". He said: "[This] sends an unequivocal message to pirate fishing operators that the EU will leverage its unique legislation to prevent their wilful and illegal actions that are damaging marine environments, depleting fish stocks, undermining legitimate operators and destroying the livelihoods of many poor coastal communities."

He said that unless there was a "dramatic" improvement in Korea's operations, its imports should also be banned.

Green MEPs welcomed the targeting of Korea, which they said had played "a very obstructive role" in negotiations over ending illegal fishing.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well, this is what the VC wanted anyway, making sure, no one can make any business with Cambodia but to do it with them instead. VC controls everything in Cambodia and when thing gone wrong, Cambodia is the name to be used as its disgrace. When is the international look into this issue and probe into it, that Cambodia is under Viet and Chinese Federation. Both Viets and Chinese have helped each other out to kill Laos, Chompa, khmers and now spreading into Thailand, how, by using or nominating the top seated level to do all the dirty works for them e.g who is Taksin and Yingluck? they are Chinese decendents, trying to distroy the Thai monarchy just like they did to Cambodia. Now, they are creating different parties to attack each other again (killing two bird with one stone), so that they could have it all in the end without going through war, and on top of that, the left over victims will turn into their slaves by working hard to pay of their debt in the name of purchasing their weapons, how nice?

Right now, they make US troops to run around like chicken with no heads, and ended up losing more troops while they sit and laugh. If the US, EU and UN don't wake up now, that is it, we are finished. Rgith now, they are already spreading into EU, US and UN plus the whole Southeast Asia, being enslaved by them ( communists) all. Please wake up, we have to find way to stop them first because they spread even more. To cure the cancer, we have to remove them or else, it will kill us all, the end.