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Russia to Sign Anti-Poaching Deal to Protect Kamchatka Crab

The market for illegally caught Kamchatka crab is worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Andrei Makhonin

At the upcoming Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Vladivostok, Russia will sign an anti-poaching agreement with Japan and China to protect Far East crab populations, after a similar agreement with South Korea has shown good results, a federal fisheries official said Tuesday.

The new agreement will help to eliminate the black market for king crab in the waters off Russia's Pacific coast, a market worth hundreds of millions of dollars, Federal Fisheries Agency head Andrei Krainy told Interfax on Tuesday.

After the anti-poaching deal with neighboring China and Japan takes effect around the end of this year, only legally caught crab will be exported, Krainy said.

The fisheries agency chief said not a single poaching ship was registered in South Korean ports in recent months following the enactment of a similar agreement with South Korea.

Krainy also said Tuesday that fish deliveries will continue this summer via the Northern Sea Route, also known as the Northeast Passage, in Arctic waters above Russia's northern coast. Last year, 27,500 tons of Pacific Ocean salmon were shipped from Kamchatka to St. Petersburg via the sea route, Krainy said.

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