Cabinet approves move to ban import of unregulated fish products

2018/09/13 18:26:56 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
CNA file photo

CNA file photo

Taipei, Sept. 13 (CNA) The Cabinet on Thursday approved a draft amendment to ban the import of fish products from long-distance fishing fleets deemed to engage in destructive fishing practices, in an effort to have Taiwan removed from the European Union's "yellow card" watch list.

In October 2015, the EU placed the country on the watch list for insufficient cooperation in combating illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. Since then, EU officials have visited the country every six months to determine how those issues are being addressed.

Premier Lai Ching-te (賴清德) said during the Cabinet meeting that he hoped the amendment would clear the legislative floor as soon as possible, and has asked the Council of Agriculture (COA) to continue communicating with local industry groups to ensure they are aware of Taiwan's policy on banning unregulated fishing.

Meanwhile, Lai also asked the COA to work with the Bureau of Foreign Trade and the Customs Administration to prevent such items from entering the Taiwan market.

The COA is the competent authority on the agricultural, forestry, fishery, animal husbandry and food affairs in Taiwan.

Those caught importing fish products from fleets deemed to engage in IUU fishing by the relevant authorities will be subject to a fine of NT$500,000 to NT$2.5 million (US$81,169), which can be increased to NT$750,000-NT$3.75 million for repeat violations within a year, according to the draft amendment to the Act for Distant Water Fisheries.

(By Lu Hsin-hui and Ko Lin)

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