Distant water fishing is one of the biggest threats to the global fish stocks. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) stated that 34,2 percent of the world’s fish stocks were classified as overfished. This continuous trend of overfishing may lead to the collapse of the fish stock which then creates a massive disruption to social and economic aspect of humankind (FAO SOFIA, 2020). To this date, China, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea and Spain are the top five largest distant water fishing fleet in the world (Stimson, 2019).
The FAO, Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and Stimson noted that the operation of distant water fishing fleet is closely linked IUU fishing. For instance 1,34 million tonnes out of 2,26 million tonnes of fish harvested by China’s distant water vessels categorized by FAO as “marine fisheries not elsewhere included” due to its obscure reporting. Additionally, the ODI reported that around 1.000 vessels of China’s distant water fishing fleet (which consists of approximately 16.966 vessels in total) are registered in other countries with complex and opaque ownership and operational control. Lastly, there are at least 183 China’s vessels are suspected of IUU fishing. Seychelles people, as reported by Stimson, generally viewed the European fleet as highly compliant and likely not engaged in IUU fishing contrary to the fishing fleet from Asian (China and Taiwan) for their absence of catch landing and reporting at Port Victoria.
Indonesia Ocean Justice Initiative will convene a webinar on distant water fishing fleet particularly in its relation to the maritime security of Indonesia. Mr. Miren Gutierrez from the Overseas Development Institute of the United Kingdom will be the guest speaker in this webinar.
Join us! Webinar on Distant Water Fishing Fleets: Challenges to Indonesia’s Maritime Security.