An article from the Yale School of the Environment on 14 August is another from an expanding series of worrying articles about over-fishing and illegal unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, and says that, after exhausting areas close to home, China’s vast fishing fleet has moved into the waters of other nations, depleting fish stocks. More than seafood is at stake, as China looks to assert itself on the seas and further its geo-political ambitions, from East Asia to Latin America. It says that, by some calculations, China has anywhere from 200,000 to 800,000 fishing boats, accounting for nearly half of the world’s fishing activity.  The Chinese government says its distant-water fishing fleet, or those vessels that travel far from China’s coast, numbers roughly 2,600, but other research puts the figure at more like 17,000. Furthermore, the Chinese population also accounts for more than a third of all fish consumption worldwide. It is said that many of the Chinese ships combing Latin American waters target forage fish, which are ground into fishmeal fed to aquaculture fish, and has also focused on shrimp and now endangered totoaba fish, which are much prized in Asia for the alleged medicinal properties of their bladders, which can sell for between $1,400 and $4,000 each. From the waters of North Korea to Mexico to Indonesia, incursions by Chinese fishing ships are becoming more frequent, brazen and aggressive.


Author: raytodd2017

Chartered Legal Executive and former senior manager with Isle of Man Customs and Excise, where I was (amongst other things) Sanctions Officer (for UN/EU sanctions), Export Licensing Officer and Manager of the Legal-Library & Collectorate Support Section

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