Ecuador maintains surveillance of fishing vessels near Galapagos

Updated 07/07/2021 11:47 am

The Minister of the Environment, Water and Ecological Transition, Gustavo Manrique, held a discussion with different local actors in Galapagos due to concerns about the presence of these multinational fishing vessels.

(Photo: Broadcast)

The Ecuadorian authorities reiterated that vigilance is being maintained in the presence of multinational fishing vessels on the outskirts of the Galapagos Exclusive Insular Economic Zone (ZEEI), and they have pointed out that they are in international waters.

The Minister of the Environment, Water and Ecological Transition, Gustavo Manrique, held a discussion with different local actors in Galapagos in order to exchange opinions about the concern that exists about the presence of these multinational fishing vessels, the institution said in a statement.

The official summarized the positions of the different actors and highlighted that “they agreed that no ship has entered the Galapagos Marine Reserve, so we are certain that our protected area maintains its sovereignty, and we will remain vigilant in the event of any change. that may arise ”.

Likewise, the captain of the Port of Puerto Ayora, Lieutenant Carlos Vallejo Ortega, confirmed that there have been no incursions by the aforementioned international ships to the ZEEI or the Galapagos Marine Reserve.

And he reaffirmed the commitment of the Ecuadorian Navy to safeguard national sovereignty through their ships and the control systems they manage.

In the discussion, which took place on Santa Cruz Island, the director of the Galapagos National Park, Danny Rueda, and the representative of the artisanal fishermen, Dionisio Zapata, reaffirmed their commitment to ensure the sovereignty of the archipelago.

The Galapagos Marine Reserve has an area of ​​138,000 square kilometers corresponding to 40 nautical miles measured from the base line of the archipelago. Here, only artisanal fishermen from the Galapagos can fish.

The subsequent 160 miles correspond to the ZEEI and after them are the international waters where Asian vessels fish legally, the ministry noted in the statement.

Manuel Bravo, director of WildAid Ecuador on behalf of non-governmental organizations, indicated that “when the Galapagos Marine Reserve was created, there was already a lot of pressure on it for the development of extractive activities.”

“Little by little, systems were implemented to guard it intelligently, which today gives us the security of keeping it protected,” he said.

For his part, Alberto Andrade, representative of the Frente Insular citizen group, stated that “the local community remains vigilant in protecting its resources.”

“Although the mostly Chinese ships that are outside the EEZ are not a direct threat to the Marine Reserve, -he said- they are blocking the biological corridor used by species that know no borders, so we are part of the impulse of the creation of a new protection zone to increase the possibilities.”

María José Barragán, Director of Sciences at the Charles Darwin Foundation, mentioned that scientific research has evolved to offer better results.

“As an institution, we provide scientific answers to different problems, but we also know that science cannot be understood from a single expectation, but rather a socio-ecosystem approach must be considered to understand the link between natural and social ecosystems as part of the equation, which favors decision-making.”

The Galapagos archipelago is located about a thousand kilometers from the Ecuadorian continental coasts and was declared in 1978 as a Natural Heritage of Humanity by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco).

Read the original coverage from Gestion (Peru) at

Informing and sharing news on marine life, flora, fauna and conservation in the Galápagos Islands since 2017
© SOS Galápagos, 2021

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