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Mexico's federal fisheries ministry has suspended permission for an Ensenada company to use a Japanese squid-fishing boat, the head of a Baja California calamari products association told El Mexicano newspaper.
She said fisheries commissioner Mario Gilberto Aguilar Sánchez suspended the permission while an exhaustive review was made into the permit and its legalities.
Other squid-fishing companies have been up in arms about the permit, fearing that its operations will damage their businesses.
Story, El Mexicano (PDF).
El Mexicano reported that the Mexican company Atunera Max (Tuna Fishing Max) denied that the National Commission of Aquaculture and Fishing (Comisión Nacional de Acuacultura y Pesca, or Conapesca) has given permission for a foreign ship to catch squid in Mexican waters. Company legal representative Armando González Baca told a news conference that the commission had given Atunera Max permission to rent a Japanese squid-harvesting ship for two years, the paper said.
He said a lot of misinformation had been reported in the Ensenada media; the misinformation apparently came from other squid-fishing companies worried about how the Japanese ship will affect their operations.
González Baca denied that the Wakashio Maru 87 ship has the ability to freeze 340 tons per day, saying "There is no ship in the world with that freezing ability." He said the ship could freeze 15 tons a day, and said the ship's total storage capacity for squid is 600 tons. He denied that the ship's storage capacity is greater than that of all other Mexican squid harvesters, given that 250 large ships and 2,000 smaller boats have permits to catch squid.
|© Captain Ted|
The 349-ton ship was built in 1987. González Baca said the ship is being rented because there are no ships in Mexico specifically designed for fishing squid.
He said an estimate that had been reported that squid production in Ensenada was 18,000 tons was way off; he said in 2012 4,890 tons were harvested, and that so far this year no more than 1,500 tons of squid have been caught.
He said Atunera Max is run and operated by Mexicans. "Our project will not damage the fishery, on the contrary, by collaborating with Inapesca (National Fishing Institute) workers and observers we will have the opportunity to generate research that helps out the fishery," he said.