BFAR: Chinese, Vietnamese fishers use cyanide in Bajo de Masinloc

BFAR: Chinese, Vietnamese fishermen use cyanide in Bajo de Masinloc

By: - Reporter / @luisacabatoINQ
/ 04:05 PM February 17, 2024

MANILA, Philippines —  Chinese and Vietnamese fishermen are allegedly using cyanide to destroy the fishing grounds in Bajo de Masinloc located in the disputed West Philippine Sea, an official from the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) said on Saturday.

“According to Philippine fishermen, ‘yung mga Chinese fishermen, if I’m not mistaken, ay gumagamit ng cyanide as well as ‘yung mga Vietnamese fishers,” said BFAR chief information officer Nazario Briguera during the Saturday News Forum in Quezon City.

(According to Philippine fishermen, the Chinese fishermen, if I’m not mistaken, also use cyanide, as well as the Vietnamese fishermen.)


READ: PCG vows continued rotational deployments in Bajo de Masinloc


“And according to the statement of our Filipino fishers, the Chinese intentionally destroy Bajo de Masinloc to prevent Filipino fishing boats from fishing in the area,” he added.

He reported that parts of the resource-rich lagoon have already been destroyed, with estimated damage reaching “billions of pesos.”

“This destruction of coral reefs in Bajo de Masinloc is a clear case of illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing,” Briguera said.

“If it’s verified that indeed the Chinese vessels are using cyanide, this is a clear violation, this is a clear case of IUU fishing,” he added.

Briguera further emphasized the devastation that cyanide can inflict on marine habitats.

“These are serious concerns that we need to condemn on the part of the BFAR because this actually compromises the integrity of the whole marine resources, not just in the Philippines but including adjoining waters of other countries,” he explained.


He noted that cyanide not only kills fish but also existing fish larvae and corals.

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In the same forum, spokesperson for the West Philippine Sea Commodore Jay Tarriela vowed to continue the presence of the Philippine Coast Guard and BFAR vessels in Bajo de Masinloc.

Tarriela said that this is to ensure the safety of local fishermen and to boost food security in the Philippines.

TAGS: BFAR, cyanide

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