Chile’s National Fisheries Council (CNP) approved most of the quotas proposed by the Undersecretariat of Fisheries and Aquaculture (Subpesca) for the 13 major fisheries resources of the country during the last resolution meeting, according to the changes introduced by the new Fisheries Act.

In this regard, Pablo Galilea, Subpesca head, said: “In 2013 we proposed a horse mackerel quota of 282,000 tonnes, representing an increase of 11.9 per cent over 2012.”

“This value is based on signs of improvement that the resource indicators are showing, according to evidence from the science group of the Regional Fisheries Organisation in the South Pacific (ORP), of which Chile forms part by endorsing the agreement in August,” the official explained.

The decision CNP took during its latest resolution session “reaffirms that the option we had the last two years of lowering the catch quotas was correct,” said the Undersecretary of Fisheries.

While the ORP showed that mackerel biomass has improved, “it is necessary to be cautious and be aware of the evolution of the state of the resource,” he added.

One of the major changes that incorporate the new Fisheries Act “is related to decision making in fisheries management, which must have its axis in sustainability and science,” said Galilea.

Under the new regulations, the CNP will be an advisory body and will be responsible for defining the range of fishing quotas in the 11 Scientists Technical Committees that will conform in 2013.

In addition, any magnitude of the quota to be adopted must ensure the concept of maximum sustainable yield.

This international standard “allows obtaining the largest catches without jeopardizing the availability of the resources in the medium and long term,” said Galilea.

The following catch quotas for 2013 were determined:

Yellow squat lobster (regions III and IV): 2,100 tonnes;
Horse mackerel (XV and X regions): 282,000 tonnes;
Anchovy and sardine (V and X region): 120,000 tonnes and 605,000 tonnes, respectively;
Hake (IV region and the parallel 41° 28.6′ S): 40,000 tonnes;
Nailon shrimp (II and VIII regions): 5,200 tonnes;
Lobster (XV and IV regions): 2,100 tonnes;
Spanish anchovy and sardine (XV and II regions): combined share of 805,000 tonnes (800,000 tonnes of anchovy and 5,000 tonnes of Spanish sardine);
Anchovy and Spanish sardine at III-IV regions: 60,000 tonnes;
Southern blue whiting (between latitude 41° 28.6′ S and the southern boundary of the region XII): 25,000 tonnes.

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