Spain to combat pirate fishing
The Spanish Secretaria General de Pesca, the Organización de Productores Asociados de Grandes Atuneros Congeladores (OPAGAC) and the Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF) have signed a MoU to implement a new joint pilot project allowing the Spanish Government to monitor fishing vessels operating in West Africa more effectively.
The ground-breaking pilot project, which began in November 2014, will equip Spanish-flagged and Spanish-owned fishing vessels with observation systems that will make it possible to monitor the fleet for unidentified or suspicious fishing activity.
Information will be transmitted in real-time to the Spanish Government's Fisheries Monitoring Centre in Secretaria General de Pesca, Madrid, where it will be analysed by fisheries inspectors with additional support from EJF representatives who specialise in the surveillance of fishing vessels.
The aim of this new project is to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) or pirate fishing in West Africa. The identities of the boats involved will not be made public in order to guarantee confidentiality and ensure that any legal processes arising from evidence gathered are not jeopardised. ■