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Fishing vessels threaten to stop fishing next month

Fishery associations threatened to stop fishing next month if the government fails to relax some of the strict measures enforced on fishing vessels following the European Union’s planned boycott of Thailand’s fish exports if it does not resolve its Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing practises.

Thai fishing vesselsThe threat was revealed as representatives from more than 10 fishery associations met the Department of Fisheries director-general Joompol Sanguansin yesterday to discuss the IUU practises.

The meeting was intended by the government to adapt more practical approach to resolve the IUU practises.

At the meeting, representatives of fishery associations reported problems, obstacles and impracticality that were imposed to solve the IUU fishing to authorities.

According to NNT, they requested to adjust some measures to enhance practicality.

One of the obstacles that obstruct fishery industry was a measure requiring ships weighing over 30 tonnes to report their port-in and port-out information.

The said this measure has recently caused vessels with inaccurate licenses to be classified as illegal, preventing them from sailing and has affected the industry.

Besides, the Command Center for Combating Illegal Fishing’s directive on compiling a population survey of vessel crews within 24 June 2015 has also proven to be impractical.

They requested to extend the population survey period for an additional one month, and has requested for the authority to issue guidelines in amending the fishing vessel’s licenses, for a more accurate portrayal of each vessel’s information.

Government agencies have also been asked to expedite their task of issuing relevant licenses on time, as the entire process has been subject to significant delays.

If the request by the associations were not met within next month, all fishing vessels will stop fishing , said the deputy president of the National Fisheries Association of Thailand Mr Monkol Sukcharoenkana.

European Union has yellow carded Thailand for its failure to remove IUU fishing practices, which cause enormous damage worth several hundred billion baht to its fishing industry.

Thai PBS

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