On December 15, 2020, the fifty-third meeting of the Forum for Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture (FPAS) was held, a space that brought together different actors from civil society and the Peruvian state in order to discuss the "Challenges and possibilities towards the 9th meeting of the SPRFMO Commission regarding the resource of the giant squid".
This space had the participation of the vice minister of production, Mrs. Úrsula León and also with the president of CALAMASUR, Mr. Alfonso Miranda.
Among the points that were discussed in this meeting, CALAMASUR expressed its concern about the increase in the fishing effort of the giant squid in the jurisdictional waters of the RFMO. “In 2014, the fleet operating in the PS-RFMO had 185 thousand tons of gross tonnage and, in 2019, it reached almost 450 thousand tons. In other words, they have increased by almost 150% and this progression is not stopping, ”said the president of CALAMASUR.
According to technical reports from organizations such as Global Fishing Watch and HawkEye360, today the illegal fishing behaviors of these vessels are clearly characterized.
Other major concerns of CALAMASUR is that less than 1% of the Peruvian artisanal fleet that is in the process of being formalized has managed to obtain their fishing permits. However, the Vice Minister of Production mentioned a legal mechanism that they are seeking to promote to facilitate this process. Representatives of civil society highlighted the importance of this mechanism going through a prior consultation of citizens to collect the necessary contributions to ensure that it meets its objective.
On the other hand, other points that will be analyzed in the Technical Compliance Committee of the SPRFMO are amendments, proposed by the Member States, to the current management and conservation measures (CMM). One of them is Ecuador's proposal to modify the CMM of the giant squid (CMM 18-2020) to increase the percentage of coverage of observers on board to 100% in 2027. Another of Ecuador's proposals proposes the elimination of the benefits of the Asian distant water fleet for transshipment offshore.
On the other hand, the European Union proposes a formula to limit the fishing effort authorized to fish for squid in international waters of the South Pacific.
Peru, through the Ministry of Production, is proposing a modification to the management and conservation measure that regulates the SPRFMO list of vessels (CMM 05-2019), to facilitate the inclusion of vessels no larger than 15 meters in length, proposing that they be exempt from having an IMO number and an INMARSAT number.
The deputy minister indicated that she hopes to hold meetings with her peers from neighboring countries such as Ecuador and Chile to seek some consensus in support of Peru's proposals.
For its part, CALAMASUR, in its capacity as an observer in the SPRFMO, has prepared a proposal to investigate those vessels that present high suspicions of having committed illegal squid fishing.