Atlantic bluefin tuna catch to rise slightly
AGADIR, Morocco (AFP) - Annual catches of Atlantic bluefin tuna will rise slightly from next year, environmental groups said Monday at a meeting of countries that hunt the much-prized but threatened species.
In 2013 and 2014, catches will rise to 13,500 tonnes annually for fish taken in the Mediterranean and east Atlantic, compared with 12,900 tonnes today, a move that is in line with advice by marine biologists, said Susan Sainz-Trapaga of conservation group WWF.
"A new assessment of the stock will take place in 2014," she said. "We are satisfied with this decision," she added. "After a positive sign for bluefin tuna, it was important today to respect the scientific recommendations and to continue efforts to properly manage this fishery."
The new quotas were set by the 48-member International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) at the end of a week-long meeting in Morocco's port of Agadir. The new catch limits were set in a context of conflicting news about a species listed by conservationists as endangered.