C4ADS has produced this Brief, saying that over the last decade, heightened demand for squid species has led to a substantial rise in the global harvest of squid by distant water fishing (DWF) vessels. This is especially true in the international waters of the South-east Pacific Ocean. It says that the increase in opaque and unregulated fishing activity on the high seas in the region could lead to significant negative consequences for artisanal fishermen and coastal states’ seafood industries. Research found that the majority (95%) of the 140 vessels were flagged to China, with over 60% of the vessels directly owned by just 16 companies. The registered owners of 25 vessels were either linked to or ultimately owned by Chinese state-owned enterprises. 16 of the vessels or companies of interest have a history of regulatory non-compliance, including instances of forced labour and IUU fishing.