Sri Lankan government to enact new laws to overcome EU ban on fish exports

Oct 16, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government plans to enact new laws on fishing in conformity with international standards, to overcome the ban imposed by the European Union (EU) on country's fish products.

The EU imposed a ban on Sri Lankan fisheries products from January 2015 as the Sri Lankan fishermen were violating the international fisheries laws. Sri Lanka was earlier the second biggest exporter of fresh and chilled swordfish and tuna to the EU.

Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development, Mahinda Amaraweera, in keeping with the action plan being implemented to convince the EU of the need to lift the ban it had imposed, submitted a proposal to amend the Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Act No 02 of 1996.

The Minister had proposed to determine the penalties regarding the quantity of fishes and the size of the vessel at the time of the offence, to increase the penalty for offences regarding importation and exportation as five times of the quantity of fishes, to introduce the method of administrative penalty which is absent in the current act, and to create a sustainable and responsible fisheries culture in Sri Lanka.

The cabinet has granted approval to the Minister's proposal.


Source: The Colombo Page 10-17-15