Monday, November 29, 2021

France to Combat “Predatory” Fishing in South Pacific

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France and Various South Pacific Nations are Banding Together to Resist ‘Predatory’ Fishing

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As China extends its maritime reach, France and numerous South Pacific nations will implement a new coastguard network in the South Pacific to combat “predatory” behavior, the French President Emmanuel Macron said on Monday.

As part of their effort to offset China’s influence, the US and its allies, particularly France, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand, are significantly increasing their presence in the Pacific.

Though the islands themselves are deemed small in size, they are in possession of significant stretches of valuable ocean that serve as a formidable frontier between the Americas and Asia.

Macron announced, “We are going to launch a network of coastguards for the South Pacific around three main objectives: information sharing, operational cooperation and training,” he said.

Macron did not single out China, however a French presidential advisor said that the policy was targeting illegal fishing that was “for the most part due to private actors”.

With fewer fish to be found in China’s fishing grounds, China’s fishing fleets, from privately owned craft to commercial trawlers belonging to publicly listed enterprises, have ventured farther into Southeast Asian waters in quest of new fishing grounds.

By going into contested waters in the South China Sea, they have caused diplomatic disputes with nations around the South China Sea and as far as Argentina.

In order to counteract Chinese influence in the region, France has built closer defense ties with Australia and India.

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SourceSwissInfo

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