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Spain announces it will reject fisheries imports from Belize

Spain to reject fisheries imports from Belize.

Spain to reject fisheries imports from Belize.

Spain to reject fisheries imports from Belize.

Spain has become the first country to announce that it is rejecting the importation of fishery products from Belize and two other nations.

The Spanish government announced today that products with catch certificates validated after December 21, 2013 will be rejected in compliance with the legal measures imposed by the European Commission.

In mid-November, the EC threatened to take action against eight countries, including Belize, and included in a ‘black list’ for their lack of cooperation in the fight against IUU fishing.

The EC decision which enters into effect on December 21 “provides that the authorities of the Member States are obliged to refuse the import of fishery products into the EU as it is evidenced that the catch certificate has been validated by the authorities of a country with a flag that has been identified as uncooperative.”

The 8 blacklisted countries are Panama, Belize, Cambodia, Fiji, Guinea, Sri Lanka, Togo and Vanuatu. According to the EU Fisheries Commissioner Maria Damanaki, the efforts of these eight States to combat illegal fishing activities are “insufficient.”

Besides, she said that there are “clear signs” that they are not meeting the obligations under international law.

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