The Belize High Seas Fisheries Unit (BHSFU) within the Ministry of Finance was established on 12th November 2013 pursuant to our High Seas Fishing Act 2013.
The Belize High Seas Fisheries Unit (BHSFU) is the primary authority responsible for the regulation and control of Belize flagged vessels which engage in fishing or related activities on the high seas pursuant to the High Seas Fishing Act, 2013.
The BHSFU is headed by a Director of High Seas Fisheries who is appointed by the Registrar of Merchant Shipping.
The main functions of the unit are as follows:
(a) manage and sustainably develop all resources in accordance with the principles and provisions of the High Seas Fishing Act, 2013 (HSFA 2013) and in sub-regional, regional and international instruments to which Belize is a Party.
(b) Establish management plans and programs to manage the resources;
(c) Issue licenses in accordance with the HSFA, 2013 and relevant regulations;
(d) Implement conservation and management measures taken from relevant resolutions and recommendations of those Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs) and international treaties to which Belize subscribes;
(e) Coordinate and manage fisheries monitoring, control and surveillance for Belize flagged vessels;
(f) Appoint authorized officers and inspectors in accordance with the HSFA,2013
(g) Conduct summary administrative proceedings in accordance with the Sanctions Regulations S.I. No.32 of 2014.
(h) Cooperate in the conservation and management of highly migratory fish stocks as appropriate with other States and participate in sub-regional, regional and international organizations or arrangement relating to fisheries
(i) Participate in the planning and execution of projects, programs or other activities related to fisheries or fishing or the exploration of the non-living resources of the high seas
(j) Perform such other duties and functions as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of high seas fisheries
(k) Perform such other duties and functions as may be necessary to carry out the purposes and provisions of the HSFA,2013