Canada joins global pact to stop illegal fishing trade, plans more inspections

Canada will be the 62nd party to sign on to the agreemen

Foreign vessels arriving in Canadian ports can expect more monitoring by officials hunting for contraband fish now that Canada is part of an international agreement to combat illegal fishing.

As of Saturday, Canada will be part of the Port State Measures Agreement, which seeks to put a dent in the US$23-billion global industry in illegal fishing.

Liberal MP Sean Casey, the parliamentary secretary for the minister of fisheries, says Canada signed on to the agreement when it was developed almost a decade ago but it took five years for the previous Conservative government to pass legislation to implement it, and another four years for the Liberals to get the needed regulations in place.

Canada will be the 62nd party to sign on to the agreement, which Casey says mostly just seeks to strengthen things Canada is already doing.

Globally it is estimated that 26 million tonnes of fish are illegally caught and unreported but Casey says there is no certainty about how much of that total comes into Canada.

Once in force in Canada, the agreement will give Canadian officials more power to deny port entry to vessels carrying illegally caught fish, mainly through more monitoring at Canadian ports when vessels are registered and fish are offloaded.

Casey says it will also formalize Canada’s participation in information-sharing with other countries that are part of the agreement.

“It gives our international partners more confidence that we have complied with what we said we were going to do,” he said.

Casey, a longtime MP from Prince Edward Island running for re-election in the fall, said illegal fishing isn’t often raised with him by fishers here but it’s on the agenda at every international fishing conference he has attended.

In addition to formalizing this agreement, Canada recently launched three new satellites for maritime surveillance that will remotely identify and track boats suspected of carrying illegal fish.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

VIU graphic design students propose less wasteful packaging in new exhibition

‘Unwrapped’ show is on display at the school’s View Gallery until Dec. 1

Trekking Vancouver Island’s ‘Secret Coast’

Island pair paddle the most remote corner of our coastline to collect and share its story

EDITORIAL: Islanders need to step up our recycling efforts

As much as 60 per cent of items taken to landfill could be recycled

T.W. Paterson column; ‘We are looking for the hangman, me dear’, part 3

Sally stayed with the canoe as lookout as Quomlet and Johnny disappeared into a copse of trees

Four generations of Vancouver Island logging and mining stories in one show

Nanaimo’s John Gogo will share regional stories, family history and song in his latest project

Abortions rights advocates urge Liberals to turn politics into policy

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer was pressed to clarify his stance abortion over several weeks

Closing arguments begin in B.C. case launched in 2009 over private health care

Dr. Day said he illegally opened the Cambie Surgery Centre in 1996 in order to create more operating-room time

MacLean says “Coach’s Corner is no more” following Cherry’s dismissal from Hockey Night

Cherry had singled out new immigrants in for not honouring Canada’s veterans and fallen soldiers

MacKinnon powers Avs to 5-4 OT win over Canucks

Vancouver battled back late to pick up single point

Port Alberni mom takes school district to court over Indigenous smudging, prayer in class

Candice Servatius, who is an evangelical Christian, is suing School District 70

Family of B.C. man killed in hit-and-run plead for tips, one year later

Cameron Kerr’s family says the driver and passengers tried to cover their tracks

Princeton couple pays for dream vacation with 840,000 grocery store points

It’s easy if you know what you are doing, they say

Chilliwack family’s dog missing after using online pet-sitting service

Frankie the pit bull bolted and hit by a car shortly after drop off through Rover.com

B.C. wildlife experts urge hunters to switch ammo to stop lead poisoning in birds

OWL, in Delta, is currently treating two eagles for lead poisoning

Most Read