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Eye on China? Quad countries to track illegal shipping in Indo-Pacific: Report

The Quad nations (US, Japan, India and Australia) are due to unveil maritime initiatiative with an aim to curb illegal fishing in Indo-Pacific, reported the Financial Times quoting a US official.

Experts think this initiative is geared towards containing illegal fishing activity mainly from Chinese boats. Leaders of the Quad countries are going to meet in Japanese capital Tokyo for in-person Quad Summit on May 24.

As per report, the maritime initiative will make use of satellite technology. A tracking system will be set up which will then be used to curb illegal fishing from Indian Ocean to the South Pacific. This will be achieved by connecting surveillance centres in Singapore and India.

US President Joe Biden is visiting Japan to attend the meeting of the Quad group of countries. The Quad countries have increased cooperation in the face of China’s growing assertiveness.

According to the Financial Times report, the maritive initiative will enable these countries to monitor illegal fishing even when the boats have turned off the transponders which are typically used to track vessels.

Also Read | WION reports from Tokyo: Quad leaders to meet under shadow of Ukraine war, China threat

The US-Indo Pacific coordinator Kurt Campbell had said earlier this month that United States will soon announce plans to battle illegal fishing in the US.

Several countries in the Indo-Pacific region chafe at China’s vast fishing fleet. They say its vessels often violate their exclusive economic zones and cause environmental damage and economic losses.

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