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Sep 23, 2014

EU Ban on Fisheries Stock Remains Firmly in Place

The ban on Belizean fish stock imports remains in place, at least for now.  The matter came up at a recent meeting in Spain of OCEANA’s board of directors and was raised by no less than the European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Maria Damanaki. She told OCEANA that the decision was not easy given the country’s economic status, but that “the same rules must be applied across the globe to achieve sustainability.” Earlier this year in March, all vessels operating under the Belize flag were banned from selling fish to the European Union. The ban was a first for the EU under its Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing regulation.  It was put in place because the EU determined that Belize as well as Cambodia and Guinea were not complying with international fishery laws and on the rules to prevent illegal fishing practices. A statement from OCEANA says that while the EU remains firm in its decision, the organization applauds G.O.B.’s commitment to fully cooperate with the EU to eradicate the scourge of IUU fishing and the positive steps already taken to rectify the deficiencies in the infrastructure.

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