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Spanish Boat Owners Want More Say In Global Fisheries Negotiations

Representatives from the Basque region of Spain have participated in a seminar in Brussels on EU fisheries agreements, and stressed their desire to have more say in fisheries negotiations. Spanish tuna boat owners have asked the European Commission for increased participation in the negotiation of fisheries agreements with third countries.

Juan Pablo Rodriguez Sahagun, manager at ANABAC (Spain’s National Association of Tuna Freezer Vessels Shipowners) participated in the seminar and stressed that the Spanish tuna industry is key to the expansion of European fishing activities across global waters.

He said that the activities of the fleet are “fully transparent and controlled and developed with sustainability criteria that are not matched by other fishing fleets in the environmental or social field.”

He also highlighted in his speech that the Spanish tuna industry has significant influence for Europe in fishing activity in third countries. He therefore insisted that the formula for constructive cooperation with these foreign non-EU countries, who were to benefit from European fishing activity and employment, was for the European Commission to offer boat owners more input and collaboration on negotiations.

Talks also emerged surrounding the positive effects of these agreements for the canning industry in these third countries. The seminar was intended to improve governance and transparency in West Africa as a tool in the fight against illegal fishing. During the agenda, the sector presented the “Tuna Transparency Initiative.”