Netherlands threatens salmon war against Norway, Iceland and the Faroes

Aslak Berge

It is alleged that fishermen from Norway, Iceland and the Faroe Islands are in breach of agreements and have been taking too many fish from the North Atlantic, where the Dutch also fish. The Dutch are particularly concerned about the mackerel catch.

In order to hit the supplier countries as hard as possible, the Dutch government is considering sanctions, including stopping imports of salmon from the three countries, reports De Telegraaf.

In discussions in the parliament in Amsterdam, the ruling right-liberal party VVD and the Christian Democratic CDA have argued that Norway, Iceland and the Faroe Islands systematically set their quotas too high, which causes overfishing. This hampers the fishermen in the Netherlands, who must comply with strict EU quotas for how much they can fish annually.

Fisheries Minister Carola Schouten confirms that she will look at possible sanctions together with other European fishing nations. She believes it is serious that the countries are increasing their fishing quotas, especially for mackerel.However, Schouten will map the consequences of such sanctions for the Dutch fish processing industry. Therefore, she will ask Brussels for a study of possible trade instruments so that these can be used in a balanced and targeted way.

The Netherlands is Norway’s fourth largest salmon customer, with a total import of 62,588 tonnes of salmon in the first three quarters of the year, according to the Norwegian Seafood Council. The country has a significant processing industry, and is also an important transit country for overseas salmon freight via Schipol Airport near Amsterdam.

Terminal E, Schiphol International Airport. Photo: Wikipedia


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