Canada joins global pact to stop illegal fishing trade, plans more inspections

Canada will be the 62nd party to sign on to the agreemen

Foreign vessels arriving in Canadian ports can expect more monitoring by officials hunting for contraband fish now that Canada is part of an international agreement to combat illegal fishing.

As of Saturday, Canada will be part of the Port State Measures Agreement, which seeks to put a dent in the US$23-billion global industry in illegal fishing.

Liberal MP Sean Casey, the parliamentary secretary for the minister of fisheries, says Canada signed on to the agreement when it was developed almost a decade ago but it took five years for the previous Conservative government to pass legislation to implement it, and another four years for the Liberals to get the needed regulations in place.

Canada will be the 62nd party to sign on to the agreement, which Casey says mostly just seeks to strengthen things Canada is already doing.

Globally it is estimated that 26 million tonnes of fish are illegally caught and unreported but Casey says there is no certainty about how much of that total comes into Canada.

Once in force in Canada, the agreement will give Canadian officials more power to deny port entry to vessels carrying illegally caught fish, mainly through more monitoring at Canadian ports when vessels are registered and fish are offloaded.

Casey says it will also formalize Canada’s participation in information-sharing with other countries that are part of the agreement.

“It gives our international partners more confidence that we have complied with what we said we were going to do,” he said.

Casey, a longtime MP from Prince Edward Island running for re-election in the fall, said illegal fishing isn’t often raised with him by fishers here but it’s on the agenda at every international fishing conference he has attended.

In addition to formalizing this agreement, Canada recently launched three new satellites for maritime surveillance that will remotely identify and track boats suspected of carrying illegal fish.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Two dead in accident north of Campbell River

Highway closed in both directions

2019 FEDERAL ELECTION: Meet the candidates for the North Island-Powell River riding

In an effort to inform the North Island-Powell River riding constituents, we… Continue reading

PHOTOS: Spirit of Terry Fox lives on in Campbell River

Community turns out for annual run in Fox’s honour

New initiative challenges Campbell Riverites: ‘Don’t walk in the hallways’

Physical literacy is the foundation upon which healthy living is built … and it’s important to practice

Campbell River’s POTA is looking forward to an artsy autumn

Group’s major fundraiser and extravaganza hits Tidemark Theatre Oct. 5

VIDEO: Vancouver Island mayor details emergency response after fatal bus crash

Sharie Minions says she is ‘appalled’ by condition of road where bus crashed

Federal party leaders address gun violence after weekend shooting near Toronto

One teen was killed and five people injured in the shooting

Scheer makes quick campaign stop in Comox

Conservative leader highlights tax promises early in campaign

Conservatives promise tax cut that they say will address Liberal increases

Scheer says the cut would apply to the lowest income bracket

B.C. VIEWS: Cutting wood waste produces some bleeding

Value-added industry slowly grows as big sawmills close

Fewer trees, higher costs blamed for devastating downturn in B.C. forestry

Some say the high cost of logs is the major cause of the industry’s decline in B.C.

Federal food safety watchdog says batch of baby formula recalled

The agency says it’s conducting a food safety investigation

UVic president offers condolences after two students killed in bus crash

‘We also grieve with those closest to these members of our campus community,’ Cassels says

Most Read