According to the EU Sri Lanka, Vanuatu, Fiji, Togo and Panama had all made significant progress in addressing the issues, updated the Commission on progress regularly, and as such have been given until later this year to implement a series of measures they had committed to.
These five nations were all warned by the EU in 2012 to take immediate action to curb illegal fishing practices in their waters.
However, the statement also revealed that three countries – Belize, Cambodia and Guinea-Conakry – had acted insufficiently on the issue. After a number of warnings the EU signalled its intention to take action against illegal fishing in these countries.
One of these measures, announced yesterday, was to blacklist Belize, Cambodia and Guinea, which effectively prevents them from selling their products from the EU – which imports around 65 per cent of its seafood.
The action has been praised by environmental groups, since illegal fishing is thought to account for around 15 per cent of world catches.
In November 2013 South Korea, Ghana and Curacao received warning ‘yellow cards’ and are currently under investigation by the EU.