"Human Rights Watch found widespread shortcomings in the implementation of new government regulations and resistance in the fishing industry to reforms. The charity interviewed 248 current and former fishers, almost all from Burma and Cambodia, as well as Thai government officials, boat owners and captains, civil society activists, fishing association representatives and United Nations agency staff. Of those interviewed, 95 were former fishers who survived human trafficking, while the other 153 were, with a few exceptions, still active fishers. The research was carried out in every one of Thailand’s major fishing ports from 2015 to 2017."
"Mexico has taken extraordinary measures in recent years to protect marine life threatened by illegal fishing in its waters. But fishermen and drug cartels that profit off illegal fishing have pushed back, heightening tensions."
"The lack of big data infrastructure and better cooperation mechanisms are hindering governments from tackling illegal trawling, says UK-based independent think tank Overseas Development Institute. The problem is especially severe for African nations who have limited access to enforcement capabilities and where illegal fishing annually cheats governments billions of dollars in revenue."
"Sea Shepherd’s vessel M/Y Sam Simon detected the fishing vessel by radar as it navigated Liberian waters at a speed indicating trawling activity. A Liberian Coast Guard Boarding Team mobilized and found the vessel had just retrieved a trawl net. The vessel had been issued a Liberian fishing license, but the license had expired on December 31, 2017. The Guo Ji 809 had continued to fish into the new year, both on January 1 and 2, allegedly against the advice of the Liberian Fisheries Observer on board, who admitted that the vessel was actively engaged in fishing."
Via Hakai Magazine
"For years, Somalia’s subsistence and commercial fishers lost out to foreign industrial fleets from Italy, Japan, Greece, Singapore, Egypt, the former USSR, and China. Not all of the fishing was illegal, but the period was essentially a free-for-all as unlicensed foreign fleets devoured Somalia’s fish with rampant disregard for domestic and international law."
Via The Economist
"The biggest fishing powers—including China, the European Union, America and Japan—appeared to be on board to eliminate subsidies to vessels caught trawling without the right paperwork or in excess of their quotas. And the failure is shameful, because it abdicates responsibility for a common good—global fish stocks—the plundering of which risks dire consequences."
Via Bangkok Post
"About 1,900 boats became inoperable over the past two years after authorities denied licences by imposing tough regulatory conditions. The administration began tightening its grip on fishermen and trawlers after the local fishery industry was yellow-carded by the European Union in 2015."
"Indonesia is lobbying the United Nations to allow governments worldwide to pursue money-laundering charges against illegal fishing operators, in a bid to crack down on the practice more forcefully."
Via Ghana Web
"Currently, no Ghanaian-flagged vessel is able to operate in restricted zones without it being observed and arrested. For that matter, the FEU has been able to achieve almost 100 per cent compliance, with respect to Ghanaian vessels fishing within authorised zones. This has also paved the way for most of the operators of industrial vessels to request for valid fishing authorisation from third party states before proceeding to fish in those waters."
"As pressure on fish stocks increases worldwide, countries are scaling up their military responses to threats posed by both local and foreign fleets fishing illegally in their territorial waters."