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September 2017
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EDITO
Thursday, 21 September 2017

Not only did the state company EMATUM (Mozambique Tuna Company) borrow hundreds of millions of dollars on the European bond market to purchase a brand new fleet of fishing boats, but it now turns out that the boats are not fit for purpose. The Minister of Economy and Finance, Adriano Maleiane, told deputies of the Mozambican parliament, the Assembly of the Republic, last week that ten of the 24 EMATUM fishing boats are being refitted in South Africa so that they meet the technical specifications demanded by the European Union for boats that catch fisheries produce intended for the European market. But the boats were all built at a shipyard, Constructions Mechaniques de Normandie (CMN), in the French port of Cherbourg, and France is a member of the European Union. Maleiane was thus effectively claiming that boats built recently in a European shipyard do not meet the European Union's own specifications for fishing boats.

Source: allafrica.com

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Divisions in the Cook Islands over a controversial fishing deal have reached a new peak with opposition MPs asking a Swedish politician to talk to the European Union on their behalf. The government is set to sign a deal with the EU that would allow Spanish vessels to fish in its exclusive economic zone for at least eight years. About 4,000 people have signed a petition against the move. The opposition's finance and economy spokesman, James Beer, has written to Sweden's minister for International Development Cooperation, Isabella Lovin, to lobby the EU. Ms Lovin is a former member of the EU parliament and experienced in fisheries. In 2013, she wrote to the Kiribati government expressing her concerns over a similar agreement it had initialled. Mr Beer says the government has been continually warned that it's a bad agreement for the Cook Islands.

Source: radionz.co.nz

Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing will be much more difficult from now on thanks to the imminent entry into force of the Port State Measures Agreement (PSMA), states the Organization the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). FAO announced that once the necessary threshold has been reached, with 30 member countries that have formally deposited their adhesion instruments, the countdown has begun for the entry into force of this innovative international treaty. The first international treaty in the world aimed specifically at combating IUU fishing will become an international law, which is binding, on June 5. Together, the 29 countries and the European Union -- which has signed as individual part – who have formally committed through their adhesion instruments to the agreement account for more than 62 per cent of fish imports worldwide, and 49 per cent of exports, totalling more than USD 133,000 million and USD 139,000 million, respectively, in 2013 (...) The following States and regional economic integration organizations are part of the agreement: Australia, Barbados, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominica, European Union -- Organisation Member--, Gabon, Guinea Bissau, Guyana, Iceland, Mauritius, Mozambique, Myanmar, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Palau, Republic of Korea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Seychelles, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Thailand, Tonga, United States of America, Uruguay and Vanuatu.

Source: fis.com

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

The Cook Islands Minister of Internal affairs, Albert Nicholas, says many people in his electorate are opposed to the planned purse seine fishing deal with the European Union. The US$6.5 million deal would grant access to four EU purse seiners to catch up to 7,000 tonnes of tuna a year in the Cooks' Exclusive Economic Zone. It has been widely criticised with the latest claims that the government has been advised by its own officials that the documents are fatally flawed. Mr Nicholas says he may take an information paper to cabinet outlining the opposition from his constituents to the fishing plan. His comments come after the Agriculture Minister, Kiriau Turepu, said an independent team from the private sector should have been identified at the outset to advise the government on the deal. The Prime Minister Henry Puna, who is also the Fisheries Minister, is adamant the EU deal is yet to be signed off.

Source: radionz.co.nz

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Caribbean countries have a living bank of marine resources from which they collectively cash out hundreds of millions of dollars a year to support emerging national economies by providing good jobs, food and foreign exchange, among other benefits. However, in order to remain active and competitive in the global marketplace, countries have had to find ways to surmount the challenges posed by stringent international standards called sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures, for food safety and for protection against diseases carried animals and plants. Under an EU-funded SPS Measures Project, the ability of Caribbean countries to effectively address those challenges is being strengthened through initiatives such as specialized training for those gatekeepers who help to ensure the safety of both imported and exported foods. The project has reached a new milestone, as a group of professionals from CARIFORUM states -- the countries which make up the Caribbean Community, as well as the Dominican Republic -- has just concluded a sanitary and phytosanitary management course. The intensive two-week training, held at the United Nations University – Fisheries Training Programme (UNU-FTP) in Reykjavik, Iceland, was organized under the capacity building component of the project.

Source: caribbeannewsnow.com

The first-ever EU fisheries agreement with Liberia and its associated implementation protocol were signed and entered into provisional application in December 2015. Their conclusion is now subject to approval by the European Parliament in a plenary vote. Atlantic tropical tunas are highly migratory species and, consequently, fishing vessels targeting them endeavour to follow their migration across the waters of different coastal countries and on the high seas. Liberia's waters are located on the migration path of three key tropical tuna species: yellowfin, bigeye and skipjack. Access to these waters is therefore of particular interest to the EU tuna fleet, and would allow it to follow the regional migration, increasing its operational efficiency. The ex-ante evaluation carried out in connection with the preparation of the agreement shows that fishing in Liberian waters has been a significant part of EU tuna-fleet strategy for decades (though outside the framework of EU agreements), slotting in a regional network of fishing opportunities.

Source: europarl.europa.eu

Of all the fisheries partnership agreements currently in force, the EU-Mauritania agreement is by far the most significant in economic terms. A new protocol, setting the details for implementation of the agreement over the coming four years, was signed and entered into provisional application in November 2015. Parliament's consent is now required for the conclusion of this protocol. The first fisheries agreement with Mauritania was concluded in 1987, as a continuation of the pre-accession arrangements of Spain and Portugal with Mauritania. It was reshaped into a cooperation agreement in 1996. In 2006, it became a fisheries partnership agreement (FPA), renewable for six-year periods, with the current period covering 2012-2018. Unlike most current FPAs, which focus on tuna, the EU-Mauritania FPA is one of the few mixed agreements providing access to a wide range of stocks. For EU vessels to be allowed to fish within the framework of the FPA, a protocol is required in order to define the fishing opportunities for EU vessels in Mauritanian waters and the financial contribution to be paid by the EU. Following the expiry of the previous, rather controversial, protocol in December 2014, a new protocol was signed and entered into provisional application on 16 November 2015.

Source: europarl.europa.eu

Tuesday, 03 May 2016

Commission’s decisions are based on the EU's 'IUU Regulation', which entered into force in 2010. This key instrument in the fight against illegal fishing ensures that only fisheries products that have been certified as legal can access the EU market. Since November 2012 the Commission has been in formal dialogue with several third countries (pre-identification or "yellow card"), which have been warned of the need to take strong action to fight IUU fishing. In case of significant progress, the Commission can end the dialogue (lifting the pre-identification status or "green card").

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Trinidad and Tobago is at risk of being sanctioned by the European Union (EU) for being uncooperative in the fight against illegal fishing, and has been given six months to address the problems. Failure to do so could see fisheries products from the country banned from entering the EU. The twin-island republic was among three countries warned yesterday by the European Commission – the others being Kiribati and Sierra Leone – and given “yellow cards”, which indicate they will be listed as uncooperative in the fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing if certain steps are not taken.

Fish are not only tasty and nutritious, but also increasingly at risk. Overfishing is causing fish stocks to drop around the world. The EU aims to promote sustainable fishing in Europe as part of its common fisheries policy. This week Parliament's fisheries committee votes on important agreements with Liberia and Mauritania and looks at how to improve the situation in the Mediterranean. Overfishing continues to pose a threat to fish stocks throughout the world. In Europe the situation in the Mediterranean is proving problematic.