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China's fishing fleet heading for Australia amid trade war by Jamie Seidel December 20,2020   |  Source: NZ Herald

Beijing's monster fishing fleet has long since stripped its own waters bare. Now it is aggressively prowling the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans for a catch. And it is coming to Australia.

It grabs as much as it can. As fast as it can. Wherever it can. Not that there is anything entirely unusual about this.

What makes China's fishing fleet different, however, is that the Communist Party officially sanctions its behaviour. It is organised and overseen by the Communist Party. And it's used to assert the territorial ambitions of the Communist Party.

It's also huge.

"Helmsman" Xi Jinping – who recently adopted the honorific reserved for founder Mao Zedong – has urged his nation to "build bigger ships and venture even farther into the oceans and catch bigger fish".

That they've done.

It's now the world's largest fleet. Its operations span the globe. One count places the number of deepwater vessels at its disposal at 12,500.

Beijing claims only 3000 boats operate in international waters.

But the full extent of its operations came to light earlier this year when Global Fishing Watch released a study based on satellite data and tracking analysis.

Whatever the number, the fleet has another use – diplomatic bludgeon.

Australia's rock lobster

 

© 2020 NZME Publishing Limited

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