EU supports bluefin tuna trade ban but leaves door open for a review

EU countries have agreed to support the listing of bluefin tuna under appendix 1 of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), following a deal struck by European diplomats in Brussels today. However, EU member states are also calling for the possibility to review this measure after the assessment of tuna stock levels by scientists from the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) in October.

Greenpeace EU oceans policy director Saskia Richartz said:

With this agreement, the EU adds critical mass to the global call to save bluefin tuna. But, unlike the US and other countries, the EU wants to defer the trade ban until early next year. The only thing this could achieve is to allow more time for the fishing industry to sell this year’s catch.

The CITES meeting will take place in Doha, Qatar, from 13 to 25 March. The Council is expected to formally sign off today’s agreement in time for negotiations in Doha.

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