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3-Year Export License For Tuna Fishers


Port Lincoln southern bluefin tuna companies have been granted a three-year export license for the first time ever.

On Thursday, Federal Environment Minister Mark Butler agreed to issue export permits for southern bluefin tuna for the maximum timeframe allowed of three years.

Australian Southern Bluefin Tuna Industry Association chief executive officer Brian Jeffriess said the decision followed an intense period of public consultation, including differing views between interest groups.

“At one stage, the tuna permits were extended for only months because of the major debate within the government about the status of the stock,” he said.

“The decision to extend the tuna export permits for the maximum three years is a sign that the government is finally convinced that the stock is strong.

“This follows the decision of scientists to increase the Australian quota by 28 per cent from 2012 to 2014, and probably a further 10 per cent starting 2015.”

Mr. Jeffriess said many scientists and government officials were convinced in the past decade that southern bluefin tuna stock was “finished”.

“It was only the confidence of the industry and some key government officials to continue fighting that has led to the new recognition of the strength of the stock,” he said.

“One of the fishermen who believed so strongly in the future of the tuna stock was Dinko Lukin.

“Sadly, Dinko died exactly two years ago this month, and it is heart-breaking that he did not live to see his experience and insights so clearly recognized.”