Research into the country’s marine resources claims that, nine out of every ten fishing trawlers operating in the country are beneficially owned by Chinese. This is in spite of a prohibition against foreign ownership or control of the trawlers flying the countries flags.
According to the UK-based non-governmental organization, Environmental Justice Foundation, the foreign owners usually operate through local front companies using opaque corporate structures to import their vessels, which are registered to obtain the license to fish.
It is estimated that Ghana is currently losing between 14.4 million dollars and 23 7 million dollars annually in the trawler sector due to low license fee as well as the lack of enforcement of revenue for fisheries related infringement.
However, the Fisheries Commission, the agency responsible for regulating the sector, has disputed the findings by the EFJ.
The Commission described as “unfortunate”, suggestions that an estimated 90 percent of trawlers operating in the country are beneficially owned by Chinese corporations.