A new report shows that the world’s top fishing nations are using subsidies worth billions of dollars to exploit the high seas and the waters of other nations, including some of the world’s least-developed countries. Published by researchers at the University of British Columbia and supported by the NGO Oceana, the report takes a shrewd look at “harmful fishing subsidies,” payments made by governments that allow fishing fleets to operate beyond their normal capacity. The researchers found that 10 countries — China, Japan, South Korea, Russia, the U.S.A., Thailand, Taiwan, Spain, Indonesia and Norway — spent more than $15.3 billion on harmful fishing subsidies in 2018, which has likely contributed to a number of social, economic and ecological issues. About 60% ($9.2 billion) of these harmful fishing subsidies used by these 10 nations were spent on domestic fishing, while 35% ($5.4 billion) was spent on traveling long distances to fish in the waters of 116 other nations. The remaining 5% ($800 million) was spent on fishing in the high seas, which are parts of the ocean beyond any nation’s jurisdiction. China was found to be the top provider of harmful fishing subsidies, worth about $5.9 billion, followed by Japan at $2.1 billion and the European Union at $2 billion. Kathryn Matthews, deputy chief scientist at Oceana, says the report shows the scale and magnitude of harmful fishing subsidies, which can transfer the risk of overfishing from one place to another. “It was reasonably well understood by the community that works on…This article was originally published on Mongabay Läs mer

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