Posted: Sunday, June 10, 2018. 8: 50 a.m. CST.
By BBN Staff: Belize is currently making international news for revoking the registration of the largest fish factory vessel in the world, the Damanzaihao.
International media outlets are reporting that the International Marine Registry of Belize (IMARBE) stripped the 50,000 ton vessel of the Belizean flag.
This was done at the request of Sea Shepherd Legal who in a statement issued last week stated that the vessel failed to appropriately complete its vessel registration and failure to inform Belize of its record of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing.
With Belize’s latest move, the vessel capable of processing 547,000 tons of fish per year now remains stateless.
In 2015 the South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organization had declared the vessel a “pirate” and added it to the list of vessels involved in illegal and unregulated fishing.
Last week Peruvian authorities detained the vessel and will hold it for a period of 70 days for allegedly polluting the Peruvian sea. The vessel may also face criminal charges relating to its unreported, unregulated and illegal fisheries crimes from South America to New Zealand. It could be fined up to $7 million.
Currently there are plans underway to have the vessel sold. Despite being sold, the Sea Shepherd Legal is committed to ensuring that the vessel does not get another flag.
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