Fishing experts and environmentalists raised concerns over depleting tuna stocks in the Asia Pacific, urging participants of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission conference to reduce its catch by 30% to preserve resources of the bigeye species.
The Asia Pacific region accounts for more than 60% of the world’s tuna catch and about 151,000 tonnes annually – a figure that is too high, says WCPFC executive director Glenn Hurry. ‘Bigeye’ tuna, the fish popular among sushi lovers worldwide, is one of the most caught species and was reaching its limits, Mr. Hurry told AFP.
Palau fisheries official Nanette Malsol, speaking at the opening of the week-long conference in the Philippine capital, said large countries should cut back on fishing, curb the use of destructive fishing methods and respect fishing bans to allow tuna stocks to be replenished.
The commission is set to approve steps to protect the bigeye and other tuna species, along with giant whale sharks and other marine creatures that are accidentally caught, AP reports.