Aquaculture for all

South Korea Agrees Lower 2014 Fish Quota with Russia

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SOUTH KOREA - South Korea and Russia signed an agreement on the 2014 fishing quota for South Korea that is a drop from last year's figure on a request from local companies, the fisheries ministry said Monday.

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Under the renewed agreement, South Korean fishing boats will be allowed to catch up to 59,615 tons of fish, including 40,000 tons of pollack, in Russian waters this year, according to the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries.

The agreement was signed at the end of three-day negotiations held in Seoul last week, reports YonhapNewsAgency.

The overall amount marks a three per cent drop from 61,465 tons permitted to South Korea last year, but such a decrease reflects the request from local companies.

In 2013, South Korean fishing companies were permitted to catch up to 8,000 tons of cuttlefish in Russian waters, but their actual catch amounted to 5,467 tons, or 68 per cent of their quota. They still had to pay the entire amount of fishing fees for 8,000 tons, a ministry official said.

This year's quota for cuttlefish has been reduced to 7,000 tons with the quota for stingrays halved to 400 tons.

The quota for pollack, one of the most popular fish in South Korea, increased from 25,000 tons in 2013 to 30,000 tons with an additional 10,000 tons to be allowed to South Korean boats after 31 August if South Korea successfully blocks the entry of any illegally caught Russian crabs, the ministry said.

Russia, on the other hand, agreed to intensify its crackdown on illegal fishing by Chinese boats in its waters, which have often been blamed for poor catches by South Korean fishing boats there.

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