Established fishing companies Seaview and Seafish are forming a new venture with their Spanish partners. New company Polar Seafish Ltd merges Polar Ltd and Nova Seafish Ltd, both of which ceased trading at the end of 2020.
Polar Seafish will continue to operate in the fisheries in which both companies have been engaged for the last three decades and has acquired fishing vessels New Polar, Robin M Lee and Sil. The new company has also endorsed the construction of a new longliner.
A spokesman for the Falkland Islands Fishing Companies Association said that their fisheries currently face significant economic, biological and management challenges, not least as EU tariffs will undermine the economics of the Loligo fishery.
‘The shareholders remain committed to the ongoing development of the fisheries in the South Atlantic and have worked together to enable this dynamic restructure to proceed,’ FIFCA states.
‘The new structure enables many synergies and efficiencies to be gained, as well as setting out a new and stronger relationship with our Spanish partners. The new relationship includes a restructuring of our marketing arm which shall sell much of the catch, and in which Seaview and Seafish shall hold a significant equity stake.’
The Falkland Islands Government has resolved to issue a new ITQ period end ing in 2046 for those companies wishing to continue fishing after 2031 – which is the case for Seaview and Seafish (Falkland).
Long-term fishing access is important for companies needing to replace ageing vessels. Renewal is conditional on ITQ holders owning a minimum of 51% shares in the company fishing the quota.
Speaking on behalf of the new company, Alex Reid and Hamish Wylie highlighted that fishing quota holders are at a crossroads, where significant investment is required in order to continue fishing beyond 2031. Both companies are pleased to have succeeded in securing agreement and funding to invest in the longer term and will now be focused on making a success of the venture.