IN BRIEF - Official says Taiwan hopes to ink new fishery deal soon
Saturday, January 19, 2013
Taiwan hopes to sign an agreement with Japan on fishery rights as soon as possible, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs official said yesterday in the wake of a report that Japan hopes to ink the deal in the first half of this year.
“We hope to have it [the agreement] signed as soon as possible,” ministry spokesman Steve Hsia said.
He made the remarks in response to a report published on Wednesday that said Japan’s representative to Taiwan, Sumio Tarui, expressed hope in a speech in Taipei that Taiwan and Japan can ink a fishery agreement no later than the first half of this year.
Taiwan and Japan held a preparatory meeting in November to discuss a resumption of formal fishery talks to address the issue of fishing rights in the waters surrounding the disputed Diaoyutai Islands in the East China Sea, Hsia said.
No timetable has been set for the next meeting, although Taiwan and Japan have a common goal of resuming talks as soon as possible, he said.
The previous 16 rounds of talks, dating back to 1996, failed to deliver concrete results, but Taiwanese officials have expressed hope that progress will be achieved when talks resume.
Taiwan and Japan last held talks on fishing rights in their overlapping territories in 2009, but discussions have been stalled since then.
Taiwanese fishermen consider the waters near the Diaoyutais as their traditional fishing grounds, but are routinely chased away by Japanese authorities when venturing too close to what Japan sees as its territorial waters.
Pingtan Marine Enterprise Ltd. (Nasdaq: PME),("Pingtan," or the "Company") an integrated marine services company in the People's Republic of China (PRC), today announced the closing of the previously announced sale of its 100% owned dredging subsidiary, China Dredging Group ("CDGC") and its PRC operating subsidiaries, Fujian Xing Gang Port Service Co., Ltd. business and operating assets to an affiliate of the Company's Chairman, CEO and majority shareholder Mr. Xinrong Zhuo.
Terms and Background of the Transaction
As part of its diligence in evaluating the potential transaction, the Board received a fairness opinion from its independent financial advisor and investment banking firm, Duff and Phelps, LLC, and appraisal reports from BMI for the respective operating rights and licenses to conduct fishing services using the 20 new vessels. The Company had previously announced on October 28, 2013 that its Board, excluding Chairman and CEO Mr. Xinrong Zhuo, and the Company's Senior Officer, Mr. Bin Lin, would evaluate any potential alternative proposals received during a 30 day period.
Under the terms of the proposed transaction, the consideration to be received by the Company consists of:
(i) forgiveness of the Company's current CNY 155.2 million 4% promissory note due on June 19, 2015; and
(ii) the transfer to the Company of the 25-year exclusive operating rights for 20 new fishing vessels, with such rights appraised at $216.1 million by BMI Appraisals Limited ("BMI").
(iii) forgiveness of current consolidated accounts due from Pingtan to CDGC in the amount of CNY 172.1 million.
After receiving no alternative proposals, on December 3, 2013, the Board, excluding Chairman and CEO Mr. Xinrong Zhuo, and the Company's Senior Officer, Mr. Bin Lin, unanimously approved moving forward with the transaction and executed and closed the Share Purchase Agreement.
Source: PR News Wire
A man has pleaded guilty to using an illegal fishing net after he posted a video of himself in the act on YouTube. Benjamin Cook, 31, of Patchins Road, Poole, Dorset pleaded guilty to using an unlicensed net to catch salmon and sea trout on the River Sherford. He was ordered to pay GBP 475 in fines at Bournemouth Magistrates' Court. The Environment Agency said the case was the first time it had successfully secured a conviction using evidence from social media. The clip called 'Poachin in Poole' - which is still visible - was posted online in 2010 and spotted by a fisheries officer who recognised Cook.'In the blood' In it, Cook can be seen removing a large sea trout from a fixed monofilament net near Kings Bridge, Dorset. He was arrested at his home in February of 2013. The court heard that the Environment Agency had spent GBP 25,000 in 2012 on improvements to help salmon and sea trout migrate up the River Sherford to their spawning grounds. The river flows into Poole Harbour where netting is strictly controlled to protect fish stocks.
Commenting on the announcement by the UK Government today november 4th of 2013, that it will cut support for onshore wind power, but will give more subsidies for offshore wind energy projects, Bertie Armstrong, chief executive of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation, said: “We look at this news with considerable anxiety, indicating as it does that offshore wind development is now regarded as the preferred option. It may be in inshore areas where significant parts of this new wind development will in the end be placed, which creates the very real likelihood of displacing local fishing activity.
“This applies also to planned developments further offshore and if the cumulative effect is considered, then this impact could be very considerable indeed and will have the potential to affect the livelihoods of many across the industry and its infrastructure. Balance in the future planning process will be essential if sustainable harvesting of another renewable resource – seafood – is to be properly maintained.
“We have given a robust response during the Scottish Government’s consultation process for their Marine Energy Sectoral Plan, and have pointed out that the Marine Act (Scotland) that governs such issues states that there should be prevention of interference with legitimate users of the sea – such as our hardworking fishermen.”
U.S. Senator Mark Begich praised members of the Pacific Seafood Processors Association (PSPA) for their donation of 40,000 pounds of seafood to the residents of St. Lawrence Island who are facing a severe food shortage this year due to unusual ice conditions that stymied this year’s walrus hunt.
“I have just learned the seafood industry has provided a full container load of salmon for food relief its residents,” said Begich in a letter sent today to the PSPA. “Alaskans have long extended a helping hand to their neighbors when in need. The response by the Pacific Seafood Processors Association, its member companies, and logistics partners to assist the residents of St. Lawrence Island follows in the best of that tradition. Thank you for stepping up to the plate during this holiday season to help those affected by this unique disaster.” Trident Seafoods, Peter Pan Seafoods, Alaska General Seafoods, Ocean Beauty Seafoods and Icicle Seafoods provided equal amounts of salmon to fill the 40-foot container. Salmon Terminals donated the labeling, packaging, and costs associated with loading and delivering the container, and Horizon donated the transportation of the container from Tacoma to Kodiak. The container is scheduled to depart on December 4th and arrive on St. Lawrence Island by mid-December.
Source: Begich Press Release
Global environmental organisation WWF has applauded an initiative from more than a dozen countries to freeze subsidies that encourage overfishing, hoping it will spur action by other governments and help speed progress on the more than a decade of negotiations in the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
In a joint release at the 9th WTO Ministerial Conference, trade ministers for Argentina, Australia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Iceland, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, the Philippines and the United States committed their countries not to introduce any new subsidies that contribute to overfishing or the overcapacity of fishing fleets, and to refrain from extending any existing programs that might do so.
The countries, known collectively as the “Friends of Fish”, also jointly called for swift completion of talks to adopt new WTO rules banning harmful fisheries subsidies.
“The statement issued today in Bali by the ‘Friends of Fish’ shows the continuing leadership of these governments in the fight to end subsidized overfishing,” said John Tanzer, WWF Global Marine Programme director.
“It is hard to understand why all governments do not take the same pledge. With so many fisheries already stretched past sustainable limits, and with a billion people depending on fish for their food security, subsidies that deplete fish stocks are a form of madness.”
The new accepted level of ethoxyquin in Vietnamese shrimps will be officially announced by end of January of 2014.
In 2012, shrimp exports to Japan dropped sharply, posting an increase of a mere 1.7 percent after the country tightened ethoxyquin check on Vietnamese shrimps.
Data from early warning system for food safety for Japan shows that the number of Vietnamese shrimp batches contaminated with ethoxyquin had decreased to four batches by November 25, 2013 from 17 batches in 2012.
In the first ten months of 2013, shrimp exports to Japan touched USD 575 million, up 13 percent against the same period last year.
The Japanese health ministry has provisionally fixed the maximum residue limit (MRL) of ethoxyquin in shrimp, crucial for Indian exports to that country. A committee of the ministry has approved to fix the MRL at 0.2 ppm (parts per million) in crustaceans, including the farmed shrimp.The new MRL will be notified for comments from public and in the World Trade Organisation (WTO) according to the procedure.
The final MRL announcement is expected by Feb 2014. The decision will clear the stalemate on exports and would further augment India's shrimp exports to Japan.
Japan had enforced default level of 0.01 ppm for ethoxyquin in shrimp from India and Vietnam in July 2012. The issue was immediately taken up with the Japanese authorities by the Indian government, Marine Products Export Development Authority (Mpeda) and the Indian Embassy in Tokyo citing lack of scientific reasoning behind their action.
Based on this, the Japan government had referred the matter to the Food Safety Commission under the Cabinet secretariat to assess and recommend the accepted daily intake (ADI) of ethoxyquin in shrimp.
The National Fisheries Institute sent out an alert today about Shrimp Early Mortality Syndrome (EMS), a disease believed to originate in Asia and considered a threat to this important Ecuadorian industry.
The institute's director, Edwin Moncayo, reported that the disease can be transmitted through the transfer of larvae from one place to another without a corresponding analysis, El Telegrafo newspaper reported.
In this regard, Moncayo said that since September, Ecuador has been taking steps to block the entry of products from contaminated countries.
So far, nations that have been attacked by Shrimp EMS include China, Vietnam, Malaysia, Mexico and India.
"We have to be very vigilant that producers use only authorized items and report any incident," said Laurence Massaut, technical advisor to the National Chamber of Aquaculture.
Massaut warned that there is no cure for this disease and although it is different from the white spot disease, because it is a bacterium instead of a virus, it has an equal or greater impact.
According to statistics, the shrimp industry in Ecuador produced about $1.3 billon in exports in 2012, and is estimated to increase this year.
Reference is made to the stock exchange release issued on 22 November 2013, where Marine Harvest announced that bondholders representing an aggregate principal loan amount of EUR 224.6 million under the EUR 225 million five year convertible bond issued by Marine Harvest in 2010 (ISIN NO 001 0565807) had elected to convert their bonds into shares.
The conversion has now been completed and Marine Harvest's share capital has been increased by NOK 266,576,988 through the issuance of 355,435,984 new shares. The share capital increase was registered in the Norwegian Register of Business Enterprises on 3 December 2013 and following such registration Marine Harvest ASA has a share capital of NOK 3,077,833,185.75 divided into 4,103,777,581 shares each with a par value of NOK 0.75.
This information is subject of the disclosure requirements pursuant to section 5-12 of the Norwegian Securities Trading Act.
The Scottish Fishermen’s Federation (SFF) has confirmed that it will sponsor the Skipper Expo Int. Aberdeen commercial fisheries show on 30 and 31 May 2014 in a move that highlights the strong industry support for the event.
Bertie Armstrong, chief executive of the SFF, said the Aberdeen show was now firmly established in the industry calendar and provided a vital showcase for the Scottish fishing sector.
The 2014 expo will be held in the Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre and with demand for stand space anticipated to be high, Mara Media is urging interested companies to book early.
For more information: Mara Media
‘Protective’ marine worm discovered Spain
A team of researchers discovered a nemertean worm in Antarctic waters with an exceptional feature: it incubates its eggs and defends them from external threats.
The moon influences loggerhead turtle bycatch Spain
The brightness of the moon affects the bycatch of loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) in night sets during albacore tuna fishing in the western Mediterranean Sea, according to a study by the Spanish Institute of Oceanography.
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