by Staff Writers
Vancouver, Canada (SPX) Jul 04, 2012
Unfair and exploitative political agreements allow Europeans to eat fish from the plates of developing countries, according to a study led by University of British Columbia researchers.
In the case of Madagascar, the European Union pays less than it did two decades ago while catching more fish. Since 1986, the EU's quotas for catching fish in Madagascar's waters have increased by 30 per cent while its access fees have decreased by 20 per cent. As a result, the total annual income for Madagascar decreased by almost 90 per cent between 1986 and 2010.
An international team of researchers from Madagascar, the EU, Canada and the World Bank offers suggestions for fixing the problem in a new paper published online this week in the journal Marine Policy.
"Access fees should be based on the market value of what they fish, not on a fixed rate," says Frederic Le Manach, the study's lead author from the Sea Around Us Project at UBC's Fisheries Centre.
Currently, EU countries pay fees equivalent to less than three per cent of the landed value of the catch to access Madagascar's resources with highly subsidized fishing fleets, creating high profit margins for privately held companies, despite the EU's previous commitment to channel such profits back to developing countries.
"The EU is unfairly profiting from the resources of one of the world's poorest countries," says co-author Rashid Sumaila, a fisheries economist and director of the UBC Fisheries Centre. "And they are breaking their own laws to do it."
Based on a previous study, which suggested that an access fee at 50 per cent of the gross revenue would be implementable, the authors estimated that Madagascar could get 8.7 million Euro per year for access to its fish stocks - more than five times the amount the country currently receives.
"These findings raise profound ethical questions that the EU must address," says marine ecologist and study co-author Alasdair Harris from conservation NGO Blue Ventures. "The EU must take steps to ensure that all EU vessels, wherever they operate in the world, fish sustainably and in line with the its own commitments to protecting the interests of developing countries."
University of British Columbia
Water News - Science, Technology and Politics
Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.
China fishermen sue US firm for oil spill: lawyer
Beijing (AFP) July 4, 2012
A group of Chinese fishermen have sued ConocoPhillips in a US court, seeking over $130 million in compensation for an oil spill off China's coast last year, a lawyer advising them said Wednesday. Thirty fishermen from the eastern province of Shandong this week filed the lawsuit against ConocoPhillips in the US city of Houston, Texas, where the oil giant is headquartered, Beijing-based lawyer ... read more
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|