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Undersecretary of Marine Affairs Rosa Quintana. (Photo: Xunta de Galicia)

Galicia and the EU join in the fight against illegal fishing

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Friday, October 12, 2018, 23:00 (GMT + 9)

Undersecretary of Marine Affairs Rosa Quintana defended in Vigo the joint work done by Galicia and Europe in matters of control and inspection of fishing activity. In this line, she highlighted the work of the Xunta and the European Fisheries Control Agency to "end illicit practices" linked to the fishing activity.

"We share the framework of cooperation and collaboration and we agree on the search for the eradication of undeclared and unregulated fishing with the coordination of means among institutions," said Quintana.

In this sense, she valued the role of the Coastguard Service of Galicia of the Ministry of Marine Affairs, which contributes to the reduction of illegal activity in the Galician estuaries "thanks to the will to fight against this environmental, social and economic scourge."

This struggle, she said, is reflected in figures such as increases of 35 per cent in the annual average of inspections, 42 per cent in the annual average of detected breaches, 41 per cent in the annual average of seizures of utilities and also in the increase of more than 200 per cent in the annual average of confiscation of fish and shellfish species.

In addition, Quintana highlighted the progress in this fight "thanks to the penitentiary typification of poaching, a historical demand of the sector".

She also highlighted the integration of the implementation of the regulations so that a community system is established to prevent, discourage and eliminate Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing, and for which a Community control regime is available. Some fields, she said, in which "Galicia contributed its experience and knowledge with the aim of improving the action protocols to make the control work compatible with the operation of the fleet".

In addition, the undersecretariat made reference to challenges such as Brexit, in which Galicia wants to play a relevant role. Therefore, she said that in these years Galicia "worked on obtaining arguments that guarantee that fishing is not used as a bargaining chip in negotiations".

In this sense, she expressed her confidence "in how much Galicia can do for Europe and how much the European Union can do for Galicia" and thanked the work of European Fisheries Control Agency former director Harm Koster and Pascal Savouret current director.

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