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ANFACO “Briefs” Chief Negotiator On Thailand Tuna Trade Deal

The Secretary General of ANFACO, Juan Manuel Vieites, has met with the chief negotiator of the European Commission to discuss the potential trade agreement between the EU and Thailand, in which a lower tariff for canned tuna is being discussed.

Juan Manuel Vieites has alerted the Commission that there are already large amounts of Thai product entering the market even without tariff advantages. He wishes for tuna to be excluded from the deal.

ANFACO’s (Spanish National Association of Manufacturers of Canned Fish and Seafood) Vieites has concerns that the Spanish tuna industry will be under threat if Thailand is granted the free duty agreement on tuna.

Thailand is the world’s leading producer of canned tuna, but currently Spain holds the top spot for canned tuna exports to EU nations. In 2012 Spain supplied over 59 million cartons of canned tuna to the European Union.

The Spanish canning association stressed the “great importance” of negotiations between the EU and Thailand to the future viability of the EU tuna industry and the impact the agreement could have on the ability to maintain the high employment rates the business generates.

There are indications that both parties might be ready to compromise on a 50% reduction from the current 24% duty, giving Thailand a 12% future tariff.