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Uruguay: Residents oppose to new Chinese port, because of the impact in public land and marine biodiversity

Author: Diálogo Chino, Published on: 25 January 2019

“Chinese port sparks controversy in Uruguay” – January 18, 2019

…More than 500 vessels carrying Chinese flags could soon dock west of Uruguay’s capital Montevideo after Shandong BaoMa Fisheries Group received authorisation to construct a duty-free zone comprising a port, a shipyard and a factory to process and freeze fish. The US$200 million project is to be installed on a 28-hectare plot in Punta Yeguas, a mostly rural area with a public park, angering local residents. Conservationists say the port threatens the South Atlantic marine ecosystem – an area already plagued by excessive and illegal fishing – by enabling vessels to prolong expeditions…International fishing fleets, many illegal and unregistered, regularly fish off the coasts of Uruguay and Argentina in search of large squid populations…Montevideo is the second most visited port in the world by vessels fishing illegally, according to reports from Oceanosanos and fellow NGO Oceana. It is also a high-risk location for fishermen themselves. Uruguay’s National Ports Administration (ANP) has recorded an average of one crew death per month on illegal boats since 2013…Local residents have begun organising in opposition to the project with the hope of stalling it. They have requested meetings with various government bodies to get more information and have stressed the social and environmental impacts the port would have...

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