26 January 2017

Faroese fishermen skirting Canadian port ban via St. Pierre #nlpoli

Fishing boats from the Faroe Islands are getting around a ban on shipping through Canadian ports by unloading their catch in St. Pierre first.  franceinfo reported on January 20 that a total of five trawlers would unload their catch in St. Pierre by January 25.  The fish - mostly cod but with some halibut bycatch - came from the Flemish Cap.

Three quarters of the catch would go to the Faroes and Denmark, according to the franceinfo report, but the shipowners could sell 25% of their catch to foreigners.  The Danish fishing boats employed 30 French dock workers to unload their catch and repackage it in shipping containers. The first ship unloaded 150 tonnes of cod.  Eventually 30 containers would go to Halifax for transshipment, according to a spokesman for the St. Pierreais fishing company involved in the work.

In 2010, Canada banned Faroese boats from using Canadian ports to offload cod and other species following accusations that the Faroese were overfishing outside Canada's 200 mile exclusive economic zone.  The 2010 ban was the culmination of a running dispute with Denmark about overfishing.

The Faroes are a Danish-owned group of islands approximately half way between Norway and Iceland, and about 320 kilometres north northwest of Scotland.