China Agrees To Ecuador Monitoring Chinese Fishing Vessels

China Bans its Fishing Vessels From Fishing Near the Galápagos  Islands

August 06, 2020 07:46

China announced on August 6, 2020 that it “decided to ban deep-sea fishing west of the Galápagos  reserve from September to November” this year. Photo: REUTERS.

China announced this Thursday, August 6, 2020, a fishing ban on its boats in the vicinity of the Galápagos Islands, under the sovereignty of Ecuador, after the controversial presence of Chinese fishing boats in the area of this marine reserve. Ecuador expressed in late July its “discomfort” to Beijing and requested that the more than 260 boats concerned stay away from this protected area.

China “decided to ban deep-sea fishing west of the Galápagos Islands reserve from September to November this year,” said Wang Wenbin, a spokesman for the Beijing Foreign Ministry. 

This measure “will contribute to the protection of fishery resources in the region” and has been “appreciated” by Ecuador, he said at a press conference. Ecuador warned in mid-July of the presence of vessels, mostly with the Chinese flag, not far from the Galápagos.  The islands lie 1 000 km from the mainland and the area comprises a marine reserve of 133 000 km2.

China announced this Thursday a fishing ban on its boats in the vicinity of the Galapagos Islands. Photo: Twitter / @armada_ecuador.

The fishing boats are in international waters. But its proximity to the archipelago, classified Natural Heritage of Humanity, worries the Ecuadorian authorities. 

Wang Wenbin claimed that the two countries had “reached an affinity of views,” without providing further details. The Chinese authorities “will continue to demand that” flagged fishing vessels “are in strict accordance with laws and regulations,” the spokesman promised.

The head of US diplomacy, Mike Pompeo, a staunch critic of Beijing, recently gave his support to Ecuador, calling on China to “better manage the environment.” These words were condemned by Wang Wenbin, who denounced “irresponsible statements”. “I would like to remind US officials that their country has not ratified the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and, therefore, is not accredited to make unwarranted criticism,” he stressed.

The Galápagos Marine Reserve has more than 2,900 different species and a sanctuary of 38,000 km2.

This content has been originally published by Diario EL COMERCIO at the following address: https: //www.elcomercio.com/actualidad/china-prohibicion-pesqueros-faenar-galapagos.html. 


Informing and sharing news on marine life, flora, fauna and conservation in the Galápagos Islands since 2017
© SOS Galápagos, 2020

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