Minister of Industries and Innovation Steingrímur J. Sigfússon announced yesterday that the capelin quota will be increased by 50 percent, by 150,000 to 450,000 tons, for the upcoming season. The catch can deliver ISK billions to the national economy.
Capelin. Photo: Bjarni Brynjólfsson/Iceland Review.
The reason for the quota increase is that the Icelandic Marine Research vessel Árni Friðriksson found a larger amount of sexually mature capelin than during earlier expeditions, ruv.is reports.
Steingrímur stated that judging by the latest results, it is clear that it is well within sustainability limits to increase the quota by 150,000 tons.
“It is hoped that the final results may give reason to even further increase the quota, although such a decision will only be made after careful consideration,” he said.
“The reason for us announcing [the 50 percent increase] now is that ships are more or less ready and waiting. Each day is precious and so fishermen are safe to cast off,” Steingrímur added.
The quota increase regulation is expected to be issued today.
The minister described the current market conditions for capelin as good, for unprocessed fish as well as for capelin meal and oil.
Steingrímur stated that the increase is significant to the national economy. “Every 100,000 tons deliver ISK 4 to 5 billion [USD 32-40 million, EUR 23-29 million] in export revenue,” he estimated.