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Chilean National Fisheries in State of Collapse

13 April 2015

CHILE - Eight of Chile's national fisheries have been declared in a state of collapse and a further eight of overexploitation, according to a new report.

The report 'Current Status of Major Chilean Fisheries' reported that eight fisheries are depleted, eight in a state of overexploitation and 22 in a state of full exploitation.

This is the first time that Biological Reference Points (PBR) have been used in Chile as an indicator to specify the state of conservation of fishery resources.

The hake fishery between the regions of Coquimbo and Los Lagos is in a delicate condition, being classified as in a state of exhaustion or collapse.

This is one of the most emblematic resources for Chile and commercially very important for fishermen in regions like Valparaiso, Maule and Biobío.

Until two years ago, the allowable catch quota of hake was 40,000 tons, but by 2015, this share is now recommended by the Technical Scientific Committee at only 23,000 tons, 42.5 per cent less.

Together with hake, anchovy in the south central area, Spanish sardines, golden eel, alfonsino and bream are all declared in collapse or exhaustion.

"The results of the report show us a very important challenge for the future and as a government we are committed to recover our fisheries, respecting the scientific criteria for proper management, project extractive fishing, especially artisanal or small scale, and provide sustainability for the future," said the Undersecretariat of Fisheries and Aquaculture (Subpesca).

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