The agreement was made between Chile’s National Fisheries and Aquaculture Service (or SERNAPESCA) and GFW. It reflects the country's commitment to greater transparency in fishing and is the result of Oceana’s collaboration with the Chilean government to increase transparency of commercial fishing in Chilean waters.
Moreover, this step follows the Chilean Senate’s approval of a bill earlier this year that modernizes SERNAPESCA, and requires that national fishing vessel tracking information, known as Vessel Monitoring System (VMS), be publicly available.
Alicia Gallardo, Sernapesca National Director commented
President Piñera’s government program instructed us to redouble our efforts to fight illegal fishing and work for the adequate management and sustainability of fishery resources. Part of our strategy, in addition to reinforcing supervision, is to engage citizens and actors involved in protecting these resources.
Mrs Gallardo also referred to Chile's partnership with Oceana, noting that their collaboration enabled the country to make its data public and universally accessible.
GFW provides an unprecedented view of global fishing activity by using machine learning to interpret data from various vessel tracking sources, including automatic identification system (AIS) and VMS data.
While AIS is required for the largest vessels that catch a disproportionately large amount of fish, adding VMS data, which is required by some governments, to the GFW map provides an even clearer picture of fishing vessel activity on our global ocean.
VMS published data to the GFW platform with Chile’s fishing fleet, comprises more than 700 fishing vessels and more than 800 vessels that provide support for aquaculture, will be viewable by anyone accessing the public map, including governments, fishery managers, seafood buyers, researchers and nonprofit organizations.
Concluding, Jacqueline Savitz, Chief Policy Officer at Oceana stated
This bold move will make Chile’s fisheries more abundant and improve the livelihoods of Chileans and others in the region. Making data like this transparent means there will be fewer places for illegal fishers to hide.