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EU seafood import ban from Sri Lanka may be lifted


Allegedly illegal fishing boat. (Photo Credit: Paul Hilton/Greenpeace)

Click on the flag for more information about Sri LankaSRI LANKA
Tuesday, March 10, 2015, 04:00 (GMT + 9)
The European Commission ban on fishery exports from Sri Lanka could be resolved in a short time, according to a European Union parliamentary trade official.
This announcement was made by Vice-Chair of the EU Committee on International Trade (INTA) and Member of EU Parliament, Jan Zahradil after visiting Sri Lanka and observing the island's moves to comply with international regulations, Economy Next informed.
During the visit, when Zahradil held meetings with Rishad Bathiudeen, Minister of Industry and Commerce of Sri Lanka, the Parliamentarian pointed out that the EU Parliamentary Group 'Friends of Sri Lanka', of which he is a member, wants to assess how to help Sri Lanka on removing the ban on fishery exports and resuming the GSP plus export scheme which the island lost owing to human rights issues.
"Once monthly progress reports are sent to the European Commission we could try to put this on the agenda as a special point and can help solve this issue as soon as possible, perhaps in a horizon of months and not let it last for too long," remarked Zahradil.
The EU ban on seafood imports from Sri Lanka had been imposed at the start of this year after the island failed to prevent illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing practices.
Sri Lanka, which is the second biggest exporter to the EU, exports fresh and chilled swordfish and tuna to the EU with exports amounting to USD 94 million in 2013.
Trade experts have estimated that the country would lose USD 100 million annually due to the EU fish import ban, effective since 15 January, 2015.
 
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