Bluefin tuna—France reaffirms its commitment to ban trade.

8 February 2010

Minister of the Environment Jean-Louis Borloo announced on February 2 that France will support a ban on international trade in bluefin tuna, a fish that is threatened with extinction. By stating its position in favor of listing the bluefin tuna on Appendix I of the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) alongside the Principality of Monaco, France intends to shift the international diplomatic momentum toward defenders of the endangered species.

"There is international regulation by quotas, which does not work, so we are calling for tools that can take action against trade,” explained Mr. Borloo, “realizing that no commercial species of fish has ever benefited from such protection."

Given the position taken by France, the European Union bloc should be obliged to defend a ban on trade next March at the next CITES meeting. Notwithstanding, France imposed three conditions for a ban:
The ban will not apply for 18months.
Commercial artisanal fisheries (180 boats) will still be allowed within the EU.
The EU will fund the conversion of tuna seiners. (In France, 90% of the quota is allotted to 28 tuna seiners that are authorized to fish in the Mediterranean for one month.