Amid AUKUS row, concern grows over Chinese vessels overfishing in high seas

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Sep 26, 2021, 03:36 PM(IST)

A Chinese trawler Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

WWF pointed out that fishing off Oman's coast had risen several times and it was being carried out mainly by Chinese-flagged vessels. 

Amid concerns over aggressive Chinese actions in the South China Sea, reports say there have been growing concern over Chinese vessels engaging in overfishing in the high seas.

Several hundred Chinese fishing trawlers were discovered near Galapagos Islands last year as the vessels reportedly travelled thousands of miles each year to look for squid.

There have also been reports of illegal fishing with reported plunder of tuna and sharks by Chinese vessels.

According to the South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organization(SPRFMO), Chinese vessels have surged in the south Pacific with over 550 last year which have been engaging in catching tonnes of fish.

Also Read: China to temporarily ban squid fishing in parts of Pacific and Atlantic Oceans

UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) had estimated that there were 4.6 million fishing vessels worldwide in 2016. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in a report had said unregulated fishing in the Indian Ocean was on the rise.

WWF pointed out that fishing off Oman's coast had risen several times and it was being carried out mainly by Chinese-flagged vessels. 

Reports claim Chinese vessels have become increasingly common in the high seas due to the depletion of its fish population even as the demand for large variety of fish continues to grow in the country.

The heightened activity by China's vessels across the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans comes as the United States and Australia entered into a defence pact to allow Canberra to manufacture nuclear-powered submarines.

The move is being widely interpreted as a move to curb China's activity in the high seas and to keep an eye on its activities in the Pacific.

(With inputs from Agencies)
 

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