Chile’s aquaculture law revision postponed for one year, may involve taxation issues
Regulation & Compliances
Published Nov 28, 2023
The Chilean aquaculture industry has been facing debates and conflicts between the government and the salmon industry, particularly regarding the legality of aquaculture in protected areas. The formulation of new regulations has been delayed until after 2024 due to the lack of consensus between government and industry opinions. This delay has resulted in a loss of trust between the industry and the government, leading to protests and job losses in the salmon farming sector.
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In the past year, many major events have occurred in the Chilean aquaculture industry. The Chilean government led by Socialist President Boric and the salmon industry have had fierce debates on future development issues, especially regarding the legality of aquaculture in protected areas. Government and industry opinions have never been able to unify, so that the timetable for formulating new regulations has been postponed until after 2024. Julio Salas Gutierrez, deputy secretary-general of the Chilean Institute of Fisheries and Aquaculture, told UCN: “In exploring the new aquaculture law, we held negotiations with small producers, with mussel farming companies in early December and salmon in mid-December. Companies enter a new round of negotiations. We will refer to all international experiences, including Norway and the Faroe Islands, and our advisory team will study the situation in each country. But given the size of the Chilean industry, we will not just focus on what is happening overseas. , we should be pioneers in certain fields. I should not just copy, but create." At the AquaForum conference in Chile, Salas said that the confrontation between salmon farming companies in Chilean protected areas and the government has led to a loss of trust between the industry and the government. The Chilean Congress has plans to cancel salmon farms in natural reserves, causing thousands of salmon farming industry workers to lose their jobs. A protest march was held in Puerto Montt. Salas said that the Borik government's focus is to reform the existing fisheries law and re-enact a new set of laws specifically for the aquaculture industry, including salmon and mussels. In the southernmost region of Chile, salmon farming is an important industry that creates jobs. As early as the 1980s and 1990s, the Chilean government issued hundreds of salmon farming licenses, and a group of companies began to deploy them very early. Global giants Companies such as Mowi, Cermaq and other players have long claimed that the industry needs to change and that salmon farms need to be moved to other areas more suitable for farming. Loreto Seguel, president of the Chilean Salmon Association, told UCN that the delay in the introduction of Chile's new bill has weakened the industry's development confidence, and many companies are cutting investment. In addition, Chile is also considering revising aquaculture tax policies with reference to Norway and the Faroe Islands. Last year Norway's proposed resource tax gives other salmon-farming countries some inspiration for taxation.