China’s illegal distant water fishing destroying economies, environment of several countries

DNA India

Chinese vessels indulging in Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of a number of countries are destroying the economies and the environment, it has emerged.

This is especially impacting developing countries and coastal countries, and contributing to decreasing in fish stocks including that of endangered fish species across several continents.

China’s distant water fishing (DWF) fleet number around 12,000-17,000 vessels with almost 1,000 Chinese vessels flagged to countries other than China. These fleets started with overfishing of squids near North and South Korean, and Japanese waters and now has expanded to Latin America and West Africa.

Unfortunately, when it comes to Latin America and West Africa, most countries in these regions are unable to police and monitor their EEZ effectively. In fact, Chinese vessels have caught fishes equal to a year’s catch when it comes to Senegal. IUU fishing by China near the waters of North Korea has led to the depletion of squid stocks in the area.

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