August 24, 2020 2:43 PM
Roger Velez, Editor for El Comercio
The Chinese ambassador in Quito, Chen Guoyou, appeared today, Monday, August 24, 2020, via telecommunication before the International Relations Commission of the Assembly, in regards to the presence of his country’s fishing vessels near the Galapagos.
There, the diplomat answered several questions from the assembly members. The president of the table, Fernando Flores (I believe), demanded explanations about the rules that vessels must adhere to in order to deter predatory practices and pollution.
“China applies the world’s strictest control and monitoring of fishing vessels, especially those that are operating near the Galapagos economic zone,” Guoyou replied, with the assistance of a translator.
The Social Christian, César Rohón, for his part, asked the Ambassador if the Chinese Government would be willing for an international organization to investigate this fleet, but did not obtain an explicit response from Guoyou. The diplomat asserted that they comply with all international laws and so far they have no reports from international organizations that the vessels have engaged in illegal fishing.
He assured that “most” of the 350 vessels are dedicated to catching squid and a “small part” to longline, which is the most used method for fishing for tuna. “The characteristics (of the ships) do not allow them to capture protected species such as shark,” he pointed out, while noting that “the legitimate right of ships on the high seas has to be guaranteed.”
The Ambassador considered that “false news” is spread in this regard, which has caused discomfort in public opinion.
And he said that China and Ecuador hold dialogues. The diplomat ratified the commitment to apply a voluntary ban on these vessels, from September to November.
He assured that this proposal responds to scientific analysis. In addition, he said that China promotes the suspension of the subsidies granted by the world’s powers to fishing fleets.
The resident coordinator of the United Nations program in Ecuador, Arnaud Peral, excused himself from appearing to the Commission on this issue, because by means of an official letter it was reported that he no longer exercises these functions.
This content has been originally published by Diario EL COMERCIO at the following address: https://www.elcomercio.com/app_public.php/actualidad/embajador-china-flota-pesquera-galapagos.html. Also available at http://bit.ly/0824comercio