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Deputies Chamber Partially Rejected Legislative Bill

CHILE - The Chilean House of Representatives or Deputies Chamber rejected three articles from the legislative bill that will modify the General Law on Fisheries and Aquaculture (LGPA). Now, a fourth proceeding at a Mixed Commission (constituted with members from the Deputy and Senate Chambers) will take place, probably, in March 2010.

According to FishfarmingXpert, the governing party's parliamentarians voted against the articles related to the mortgage system for aquaculture concessions; the norm that penalizes those who commit 'disloyal' or anti-union practices; and the article that establishes expiration causes for concessions, delaying enforcement of the law at least until March.

The Salmon Table executive secretary and former undersecretary of Fisheries, Felipe Sandoval, regrets this delay “since it will postpone reactivation within the salmon industry”. He ensures that this rejection “is not as bad as it looks”, explaining that regarding to labour faults the Deputies’ Chamber asks for sanctions higher than those requested by the Senate’s Chamber. “If they don’t agree and in absence of a norm there will be no sanction, it therefore follows that an agreement will be reached”, he states.

Moreover, Felipe Sandoval details that “the key topics, related to sanitary and environmental issues were all approved”.

In turn, according to the Chilean Salmon Industry Association (SalmonChile) its chairman, César Barros, voiced his concern about the stand of the Governing party's parliamentarians. He considers it incomprehensible that “Deputies from districts where the salmon industry has been a development engine obstruct the approval of a legislative bill that has been discussed for over a year”.

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