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British Columbia to Receive Multi-Year Aquaculture Licences

Lucy Towers
19 February 2015, at 12:00am

CANADA - The Canadian government is to now issue multi-year licences for finfish and shellfish aquaculture facilities in British Columbia to promote investment in sustainable design and technology by the industry.

Licenses issued in BC by Fisheries and Oceans Canada have previously been limited to one year, which may have discouraged operators from making significant investments in more secure and more expensive ocean-based facilities and in land-based hatcheries, said Jeremy Dunn, executive director of the BC Salmon Farmers Association, speaking to VancouverSun.

Multi-year licences may be issued for up to nine years, according to the Fisheries Act.

“We have been working with one-year renewable licences, which presents some challenges when your fish are in the water for upwards of 18 months,” said Mr Dunn.

Companies are looking for long-term security when they consider multi-million-dollar investments in pens and hatcheries that supply ocean-based facilities with young fish, he said.

“Having multi-year licences would provide more certainty, but we would still need to meet all DFO’s standards and conditions,” said Mr Dunn.