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ICCAT decision infuriates NGOs but is welcomed by Commission

Recife, 15th November 2009. ICCAT slashes blue fin tuna quotas by a third, thereby rejecting a complete ban.

Environmentalists are bitterly disappointed at ICCAT's decision to not place a complete moratorium on fishing blue fin tuna, which is an endangered species.

Scientists across the world have warned that the bluefin tuna stock has fallen to almost 15 percent of its pre-industrial-fishing levels, and conservation groups have said that only a fishing moratorium could save the stocks for the future.

ICCAT has stated that a complete ban would only encourage illegal fishing but Scientists have warned that the bluefin tuna stock has fallen to almost 15 percent of its pre-industrial-fishing levels.

The European Commission welcomed the decision, pointing out that the reduced TACs would be accompanied by “drastic cuts in fishing capacity”.

Fisheries Commissioner Joe Borg said he was confident that “this unprecedented set of concrete and ambitious steps will mark decisive progress in managing and conserving this migrating stock in the Mediterranean and the Atlantic”.

“Our goal is to ensure the return to a healthy bluefin tuna stock and a viable and sustainable fishery for our fleet. Admittedly, ICCAT had a very tough task this year, but it has certainly risen to challenge”, he added.

Photograph by Marco Carè/Marine Photobank.


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