The Costa Rican government has implemented a new bill to “guarantee the [country’s] tuna fishery’s exploitation, environmental protection and responsible use”, said Gustavo Meneses, executive president of Costa Rica’s fisheries and aquaculture institute.
“We promote a new model for tuna fishing,” Meneses said in a message to the nation (see video below), pointing out that the government’s initiative aims to improve tuna fishing in the country.
The government will award fishing licences on the basis of scientific and technical criteria, in order to safeguard the industry’s sustainability and protect other species, Meneses said.
The amount of tuna that will be extracted is set with the aim of preserving the resource and making the activity sustainable, he added.
The value of these licenses will be linked to the price of the product in the market, Meneses said.
Licenses will be conditional upon prior disposal of the tuna to the processing or packaging industry.
The new bill will protect survival and competitiveness of the Costa Rican fleet and related industry sectors, according to Meneses.
“One of the greatest riches of Costa Rica is its marine resource. The country is ten times larger by its sea territory than by its continental extension,” Meneses pointed out.
“In our Pacifc Ocean we have enormous potential,” he added.
In Costa Rica, catches of yellowfin, skipjack and bigeye total 25,000 metric tons per year, with an international market value of around $2,000 per ton, Meneses said.
Incopesca was not available to provide additional details on the new bill at the time of publication.