Japan, Russia Reach Agreement on Fishing Quotas Amid Ukraine-Related Sanctions

By Aldgra Fredly
Aldgra Fredly
Aldgra Fredly
Aldgra Fredly is a freelance writer based in Malaysia, covering Asia Pacific news for The Epoch Times.
April 23, 2022 Updated: April 23, 2022

Japan and Russia have reached an agreement on Tokyo’s fishing quotas for salmon and trout spawned in Russian rivers, despite Moscow’s anger over the spate of economic sanctions that Tokyo imposed over its invasion of Ukraine.

Japan’s Fisheries Agency said Saturday that the two countries agreed on Tokyo’s fishing quota of 2,050 tons of salmon and trout within its exclusive economic zone, with the agreement expected to be signed next week, Kyodo News reported.

Under the agreement, Japan will pay an annual cooperation fee of between 200 million yen ($1.56 million) to 300 million yen ($2.34 million) to Russia, depending on the eventual tonnage of the catch. A cooperation fee is paid to the country where the fish were spawned.

Japan requires Moscow’s permission to catch salmon and trout even within its exclusive economic zone, owing to a mutual agreement that vests the country of origin with fishing rights. Japan paid 260 million yen ($2.02 million) in a cooperation fee to Russia last year.

The country has imposed a slew of sanctions on Russia over the war in Ukraine, including sanctions targeting Putin and several other Russian leaders. It also restricted exports of certain goods to the country and banned Russian banks from the SWIFT global interbank network.

On April 12, Japan’s cabinet agreed to freeze the assets of 398 Russian individuals, including two daughters of Russian President Vladimir Putin, as well as those of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov’s wife. This brings the total number of Russian individuals sanctioned by Japan to 499.

Japan said it will impose sanctions on 28 additional Russian organizations and two Russian banks—Sberbank and the Alfa-Bank—which will take effect on May 12. It also banned imports of Russian alcoholic beverages, including vodka, machinery, and lumber products, with a total of 38 goods being subjected to the ban.

Russia placed Japan on its “unfriendly nations” list and suspended peace treaty talks with Japan in retaliation for Tokyo’s sanctions against its invasion of Ukraine, a decision Japan has strongly condemned.

On March 23, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said Japan won’t pull out from the Sakhalin-2 LNG project in the Russian Far East, saying that the project is “extremely important” to Japan’s energy security.

Aldgra Fredly is a freelance writer based in Malaysia, covering Asia Pacific news for The Epoch Times.