Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

January 10, 2008 08:30 ET

Canada's Fight Against Overfishing in NAFO Area Continues to Pay Off

Statement by Loyola Hearn, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Jan. 10, 2008) - For Canada's ongoing strategy to stop foreign overfishing off the Nose and Tail of the Grand Banks and across the NAFO area, 2007 was a record year of achievement. Most notable was the fact that only one serious incident in NAFO waters was detected by Canada's NAFO inspectors. This incident was dealt with promptly and consistently with the new requirements that came about with NAFO reform.

Recently, I was informed of another successful conclusion to an infringement that was detected by Canada's NAFO inspectors during their boarding of a Russian vessel in May 2007. While the citation issued by our inspectors was minor, the Russian Federation imposed financial penalties on the owner of the vessel and prohibited the vessel from undertaking fishing activities in the NAFO area that had been planned for August to December 2007. The master of the vessel and most of the crew were also replaced as a result of the incident.

The determination and perseverance of Canadian inspectors must be recognized in this particular incident, as they not only conducted the at-sea inspection, they also followed the lengthy in-port inspection process through to completion. This top-notch effort takes commitment across Fisheries and Oceans Canada - and I am proud of my officials for continuing to uphold the highest standards of conservation and sustainability regarding high seas fish stocks.

I'm also pleased that the Canada-Russia Memorandum of Understanding for fisheries cooperation is already paying off by increasing information sharing on enforcement activities. Sharing such information is one way that Canada is working with the Russian Federation and other key fishing nations to prevent overfishing and other illegal fishing activities - and we will continue to do so.

The success of Canada's strategy to end overfishing in the NAFO area is built on commitment, perseverance, and teamwork. I am hopeful that we can achieve similar success in 2008.

Contact Information

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Ottawa
    Phil Jenkins
    Media Relations
    Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Ottawa
    Steve Outhouse
    Director of Communications
    Office of the Minister