Japanese fish wholesalers have protested at a market in Tokyo after yesterday’s decision by the EU to support an international ban to stop trading in Atlantic bluefin tuna.
Japan, the world’s biggest consumer of the valuable fish, is against the measures. It says it will not comply if a total stoppage is put in place.
Brussels says the move is aimed at protecting dwindling stocks following a rapid decline in recent years. Despite that, the Japanese government is defiant.
The country’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirofumi Hirano said: ‘‘Our position remains to manage resources and we will stick to that.’‘
But tuna stocks have taken a battering since 1970, sinking by an estimated 80 per cent. That is the same figure for the amount of the fish consumed by Japan in the world.
Highly prized, tuna mostly goes into making sushi and sashimi with some fish fetching more than 70,000 euros each.