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|Wednesday, May 31, 2000, updated at 09:57(GMT+8)|
Enforcement of Fishery Pact on the HorizonA fleet of six Chinese fishery management ships set out Tuesday for the East China Sea from Shenjiamen Port in Zhoushan, in East China's Zhejiang Province, to supervise enforcement of the New Sino-Japanese Fishery Agreement which will take effect tomorrow.
The fleet will cruise fishing waters stipulated in the agreement to ensure that no Chinese or foreign fishing ships illegally enter the area.
Chinese fishery management aircraft will also take part. A temporary co-management fishery zone will be set up between 27 degrees and 34.4 degrees north latitude, 52 nautical miles beyond the respective basic territorial sea lines of the two countries.
Fishing activities in the zone will be managed by China and Japan while areas on either side of the zone will be under the jurisdiction of the respective countries.
The agreement is the first that China has signed with its neighbours based on the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. It marks a new era for China's fishing management, which extends from offshore waters to China's exclusive economic zone, said Liu Jian, vice-minister of Agriculture.
Liu conceded that the fishery agreement will have a great affect on China's traditional fishery industries because many ships will have to retreat from the east side of the co-management zone.
Experts estimate that more than 17,000 Chinese fishing ships will be out of commission and some 170,000 fishermen will be affected. In Zhejiang alone, the fishing output will be cut by a million tons on an annual basis.
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