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Spain Wants 14 Percent Bigger Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Quota

Spain will be requesting a 14 percent increase on its Atlantic bluefin tuna quota at the upcoming annual ICCAT meeting, starting November 18. The Cape Town hosted discussion will see Spain ask for the rise in its bluefin catch limit for 2014.

Both the Minister of Agriculture and Environment, Miguel Arias Cañete, and the Minister of Agriculture of the Government of Catalonia, Josep Maria Pelegri, have agreed to support an increase in the total allowable catch (TAC) of bluefin tuna for Spain.

Cañete said that a bluefin “recovery is a reality” and that Spain “will not accept excuses for this and request an increase of 14 percent on the catch quota” at the next meeting of the International Committee for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT).

He added: “The Government’s position is very clear. The industry has made a very responsible implementation of the recovery plan for bluefin tuna stock. Sacrifices have been subjected for many years, but this plan has worked and all scientific studies point to the situation being much better, so it seems reasonable to ask for a fee increase.”

The increase of the bluefin tuna limit for Spain, if accepted, is likely to benefit the three trap fisheries in the Spanish province of Cadiz, which have long advocated for increases on the current quotas.