EU cites Trinidad and Tobago as non-cooperating country in campaign against illegal fishing
The European Commission has decided to identify Trinidad and Tobago as a non-cooperating country in the fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, giving it a so-called “red card.”
The decision is based on the EU’s IUU Regulation, which provides for a cooperation framework with countries to address IUU fishing and ensures that only legally caught fisheries products can access the EU market.
Lack of progress in addressing serious shortcomings
The listing of the country follows from the lack of progress in addressing the serious shortcomings outlined in the pre-identification decision of Trinidad and Tobago as a non-cooperating country, adopted in April 2016.
Despite the support of the EU to Trinidad and Tobago under the IUU dialogue, both in relation to the revision of the legal framework and in monitoring, control and surveillance, the country did not make sufficient progress to satisfy the requirements under the IUU legislation. Notably, Trinidad and Tobago did not enact an adequate legal framework regulating the activities of the national fishing fleet in and beyond waters under national jurisdiction nor the activities of third countries’ fishing vessels in national ports.
Other persistent shortcomings relate to the lack of adequate control over the national fishing fleet and the foreign fishing fleets calling to port in the country as well as the lack of necessary measures for the cessation and prevention of IUU fishing activities.
The commission will continue its dialogue with the authorities of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago to help the country address the identified shortcomings.
Following the procedure of identification, the commission has proposed to the EU Council to formally list Trinidad and Tobago as a non-cooperating country in accordance with Article 33 of the IUU Regulation.