Ban on blue fin tuna could put pressure on Maldivian waters

Minister for State Economic Development Adhil Saleem has told Miadhu that the EU’s decision to back the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) ban on blue fin tuna would increase pressure on Maldivian waters.

Saleem warned Coastguards needed to be careful in monitoring illegal foreign fishing vessels that might enter Maldivian waters to catch the blue fin tuna.

He said some fish which are common in the Maldives could face extinction if outer seas were not patrolled carefully.

Bunyaameen, Chairman of the Maldives Sea Product Processors Association, told Miadhu that the decrease in blue fin tuna would increase the value of Maldivian yellow fin tuna.

CITES has proposed a temporary ban on international sale of Atlantic blue fin tuna due to over-fishing and the low numbers of this species. The USA has also backed the ban, but Japan, where most blue fin tuna is eaten according to the BBC, is opposing the ban.

The motion needs a two-thirds majority to pass.