Tuesday, May 26, 2015Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Japan to propose 50% cut in young tuna catch: Officials

Published on Aug 26, 2014 6:44 PM

TOKYO (AFP) - Japan plans to propose a 50 per cent cut on catches of young bluefin tuna in the Western and Central Pacific, officials said on Tuesday, in a historic shift aimed at safeguarding the at-risk species.

Tokyo - the world's biggest consumer of tuna - has been reluctant to reduce catches, despite mounting scientific evidence that stocks are near collapse.

But in what it called "an epochal move towards more thorough regulation", Japan plans to propose during an upcoming regional fisheries conference that the amount of young fish that can be caught is slashed to half the 2002-2004 average.

Japan said it would propose members of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) adopt a 10-year recovery plan for Pacific bluefin tuna, beginning in 2015.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!