Sturgeon fishery and export facing complete ban in 2009

February 10, 2009 16:24

At the 29th meeting of the pentalateral commission (Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenia, Iran, Azerbaijan) on the aquatic resources of the Caspian Sea Iran has refused to sign the resulting protocol thus initiating a technical moratorium for capture and export of sturgeon species and sturgeon caviar in 2009, reports ( with reference to Interfax.

At the previous meeting of the commission the sides have agreed that the national quotas for sturgeon capture in 2009 will be defined under the principles approved by all the Caspian States. The draft principles has been finished off by the Russian side and forwarded for consideration to all the member states before the commission.

However, at the meeting Iran has rejected the proposals due to disagreement with seven criteria offered by Russia for calculation of the national quotas. The discord has resulted in the fact that the protocol on the results of the second round of talks has not been signed and the non-signing actually means introduction of a technical moratorium for sturgeon capture and export, caviar including, for all the Caspian States.

Head of Russia's fishery industry Andrey Krainy previously suggested introducing a ban for the sturgeon fishery in the Caspian Sea for a period of 10 years and he announced the need to sign the respective document at the intergovernmental economic conference of the Caspian States in October 2008.

At present the Caspian Sea contributes nearly 90% of the world sturgeon stocks.

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