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Ecuadorian Shipyards Are Full For EPO Seiners


Ecuador has seen USD 100 million in revenue as the annual tuna fishing ban for 60 days has been used by vessel owners as an opportunity to repair their ships.
The Port of Manta, where the banned vessels have been pouring into shipyards has become so crowded that some seiners have been forced to undergo repairs at ports in Peru.
The current ban sees 51 of the 106 Ecuadorian tuna vessels halt on tuna fishing, while another 45 are expected to stop activities during the second ban starting in November. The 60 days off for fishermen calls for the employment of temporary welders, painters and other tradesman to allow them to earn extra income for the banned period.
Raul Paladins, representative of ‘Paladins Brothers,’ which owns 11 ships said that the installed capacity of the countries shipyards or docks has not increased in the last 40 years, but the tuna fishing fleet has quintupled in number of seiners. “You will see a lot of boats piled, fighting for space, either to unload or to undergo maintenance.”
He outlined that some vessels are left with no alternative but to enter shipyards in Peru which can result in high costs, referring to recently performed maintenance on one of their seiners in a Peruvian port which lasted around four months and cost over USD 1 million.
The tuna industry is asking for the construction of a dock for maintenance of these boats which has been proposed for the area between Jaramijo and Crucita, where there is eight kilometers of beachfront appropriate for hosting a shipyard.
Paladins believes the current port of Manta does not provide the space for the kind of work the industry requires and urges immediate construction of increased space for ship repair for the Ecuadorian tuna fleet.  “There is maintenance that is very simple, like painting, cleaning and small work that we can do right here, but there are other improvements that are a lot more demanding.”