27 Aug 2007

Scientific committee calls fro reduction in yellowfin tuna catches

6:24 am on 27 August 2007

The scientific committee of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission says if Pacific yellowfin tuna continues to be caught at current rates, the supply could drop as much as 25 percent in five years.

The Honolulu Star Bulletin says a panel of scientists from 30 countries advises the commission, an international body that is trying to ensure that the Pacific tuna-fishing nations do not overexploit the resource.

The panel made the announcement on the final day of a two week meeting at the Hawaii Convention Centre.

A year ago the scientists urged the commission to require its participating nations to reduce catches of yellowfin tuna by 10 percent, due to concerns of overfishing.

The scientists also urged that Pacific fishing nations cut landings of bigeye tuna by 25 percent.

But the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission -- which includes China, Japan and Taiwan -- did not do it, and the scientific committee is likely to recommend the same reductions again this year.