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How Chinese Distant Fishing Is Wrecking Coastal Economies

A file image of a Chinese-flagged fishing trawler anchored off Fiji. Chinese distant fishing fleets are increasingly putting pressure on coastal economies throughout the Global South. Image: William West / AFP

China’s distant fishing fleet is increasingly affecting coastal economies throughout the Global South. With an estimated 17,000 vessels, China has the world’s largest distant fishing fleet.

They operate in a legal grey zone, hauling thousands of tons of sea creatures from international waters around the world, frequently fueled by subsidies from Chinese provincial governments eager to hit output targets.

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What is The China-Global South Project?


The China-Global South Project is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.


A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Global South stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.


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