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Fish processing plant. (Photo: El Pescador, ASIPES)

Industrial fishing association objects fisheries bill

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Friday, January 06, 2012, 23:40 (GMT + 9)

The Fishing Industry Association (ASIPES) announced that the fishing industry had lowered earnings in 2011 and argues that the Fisheries Act draft has "good intentions" but "misguided proposals."

According to the agency last year fishing downloads in south-central area between regions IV and X -decreased by 1.2 per cent compared to those recorded in 2010, which increased from 1,053,530 tonnes to 1,034,118 tonnes.

Data provided by ASIPES indicate that between 2009 and 2011 the participation of the area fell from three quarters of the national total to less than a half.

In this context, ASIPES manager, Luis Felipe Moncada, said he disagreed with the tenders referred to in the bill for the fisheries sector.

The industrialists fear that the quota tender in Bío-Bío can cause serious problems to the sector.

At present, they worry that their participation in the landings, compared with the artisan fishing of the central south, has been falling steadily: while in 1991, the industry accounted for 90.3 per cent, last year it captured 37.1 per cent.

ASIPES argues that "with quotas agreed at the Fisheries Board, in 2013, the industry would reduce its participation to 29.8 per cent" reported Radio Bío Bío.

According to the association, the industrial catch of the south central area is focused on products for human consumption. In the case of mackerel, for example, participation in 1994 was 8 per cent and last year, 85 per cent.

Moncada says that if a royalty is applied to the sector, "it is reasonable to pay a tax similar to other economic activities that operate with natural resources such as mining, which has a royalty on operating profit", Diario Financiero informed.

For his part, ASIPES president, Roberto Izquierdo, insists on that the project should be improved and perfected in parliamentary debate.

"The articles weaken institutionality, concentrating on the authority, without counterweight, decision-making in a complex sector," says Moncada, according to La Tercera newspaper. "An informed participation body should be looked for to serve as a balance," he stated.

The two ASIPES leaders also warned that the composition of the Panel of Experts will depend on the ministers of economy and environment, and that "the profile of their candidates is outlined as a theoretical researcher."

Related article:

- Government and fisheries rely on rapid quota project procedures

By Analia Murias



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