The European Union’s withdrawal of a threat to ban Thai seafood imports is the welcome reward Thailand earned after pushing through a series of reforms to curb illegal fishing practices. The threat hung over our fisheries industry for three years, but now the so-called “yellow card” – a football reference known all too well here – has been withdrawn. EU fisheries commissioner Karmenu Vella told the press after meeting Deputy Prime Minister Chatchai Sarikulya on Tuesday that combating illegal fishing remains a high priority for the EU. He said Thailand had now become “a new committed partner in this fight”. Thailand has long taken pride in its status as the world’s third-largest exporter of seafood products, but it was only recently that we acknowledged the ranking was achieved through overfishing and cruel reliance on low-paid and trafficked labour from neighbouring countries. Profits and a reputation for meeting global demand should … [Read more...] about Thai fishing industry not quite OFF THE HOOK
Thai fishing slavery
Darian McBain, global director of sustainability for the Thai Union Group, will address the panel on the topic of “Stepping up Action to End Forced Labour, Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking”. “Thailand has made a number of advances on human rights, which should be commended, but there is more work to be done and I believe Thailand has the opportunity be a leader on the human rights agenda,” McBain told The Nation. For instance, Thailand’s Depart-ment of Fisheries has been very supportive of an innovative digital traceability pilot project that Thai Union implemented last year. The project utilises mobile applications and satellite connectivity to track Thai fishing vessels. Traceability – the ability to track a product in detail from its place of origin all the way to the consumer – is a key component that benefits producers and consumers by bringing transparency to the entire system. Looking ahead, Thai Union aims to help … [Read more...] about Thai Union committed to help Thailand deal with sustainable fishing challenges
The world yesterday commemorated International Labour Day, honouring an essential segment of society whose importance most people in Thailand tend to overlook – despite widespread media coverage in recent years regarding gross violations of the rights of the 60,000-plus low-skilled labourers, mainly foreign migrants, working in this country. Concerns about these abuses echoed through the overseas press, to which private firms and government agencies abroad responded with a range of actions that included threats of economic sanctions and boycotts of Thai seafood products, based on humanitarian grounds. The International Labour Organisation (ILO) has just released a video to be distributed among foreign workers in Thailand, explaining crucial information in Thai, Khmer and Burmese. “Ensuring that they are aware of their rights and know how to find help to protect them is essential to preventing and ending abusive labour practices,” the organisation declared yesterday. … [Read more...] about On Labour Day, the labourers ignored
KUALA LUMPUR: Trafficked into work and routinely abused, migrant fishermen in Thailand are still subject to forced labour despite efforts by the government to clean up the industry, advocacy groups said on Tuesday. Thailand's multibillion-dollar seafood sector came under scrutiny in recent years after investigations showed widespread slavery, trafficking and violence on fishing boats and in onshore processing facilities.The military, which took power since a 2014 coup, has rolled out reforms since the European Union in 2015 threatened to ban fish imports from Thailand unless it clean up the industry. But the advocacy group Human Rights Watch (HRW) says little has changed.Brad Adams, the group's Asia director, said the measures should have given consumers in Europe, the United States and Japan the confidence that Thailand's seafood does not involve forced labour."Yet despite high-profile commitments by the Thai government to clean up the fishing industry, problems are rampant," he added … [Read more...] about ‘It was torture’: Grim tales in Thai fishing sector
I am beginning to think that NACC stands for the "national association for the criminally corrupt". This supposedly independent body [National Anti-Corruption Commission] sits by and watches the ruling elite get away with anything they wish.We have government officials who openly declare wealth that would take 500 years of their official salary to accumulate and nobody raises a question.Is this the real Thailand? If so, isn't it time for the clean and uncorrupted to rise up and announce the changes so badly needed. LungstibVictoria's Secret Massage may be the undoing of the current regime, at least in terms of their desperate hope for an upgrade in the annual US Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report. (BP, Jan 22).It now looks unlikely -- under-age, cross-border girls trafficked into an inner-city brothel cum massage parlour reflects on this trade across the city, and beyond.Your Jan 16 editorial is correct in saying, "human trafficking is taking place right under our noses". It then … [Read more...] about NACC soft on graft?