Yantai cuts fuel subsidies to slim domestic fishing fleet
Authorities in the key Chinese seafood port and processing hub of Yantai have announced that fuel subsidies will be withdrawn from “old and worn-out” vessels. The announcement is a sign of the efforts of China’s efforts to reduce trawler numbers in its own waters.
A statement from the provincial office of the Ocean and Fisheries Bureau, the government agency overseeing fisheries, said dragnet trawlers operating in domestic waters “should not register for fuel subsidies” starting in the year 2020.
Likewise, deductions will be made for “illegal activities” in 2017 when fishermen submit their applications for license renewal in 2018, the document said. Fishermen are required to be licensed in order to get fuel subsidies. The document also announces the end of fuel subsidies to given to barges but previously qualifying due to their nominal categorization as being part of the fishing sector.
The latest moves are significant, as Yantai is home to a huge number of trawlers. Yantai’s trawlers primarily fish in the Yellow Sea, an area that has been the site of increasing tensions between trawlers from China and naval authorities from South Korea and Japan.