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Spanish And Thai Canners To Cross Swords In Vigo


Major producers in the EU canning industry, Spanish region Galicia, will have an important appointment with the world’s leading producer of canned tuna, Thailand, in Vigo in September.

The VI Vigo Tuna Conference, organized by the Spanish canned seafood processors organization, Anfaco, will see representatives of the tuna industry meet to discuss the current situation of the sector.

Delegates from Thailand, Spain and the EU will come together to discuss their differences in opinion to the free trade proposals that are being negotiated. The potential agreement could see Thailand and Philippines benefit from zero percent duty tuna trade to the EU.

The Spanish canning industry, mainly Galician is making a campaign to demand that canned tuna is excluded from the agreement as they believe that Thailand would benefit hugely and this would cause risk to the survival of the European industry. It was stated that in Galicia alone, thousands of jobs would be cut if its tuna industry was not to survive.

One criticism that the EU canning industry issued was focused towards allegations that Thailand’s working conditions were inferior to those of European companies. Large tuna corporations in Thailand want to confront their European colleagues about their views and interests concerning the mentioned trade agreement. 

The bi-annual Vigo conference this year is thought to represent the occasion for the disagreeing parties to settle their differences.

According to Anfaco’s Secretary General, Juan Manual Vieites, the meeting will take place “for each party to present its case so we know what they expect from the trade agreement.”

Mr. Chainintr, Vice-president of Thai Food Processors Association and Chairman of TunaGroup will be the representative from Thailand speaking at the conference.