The Department of Fisheries and Oceans has announced it is introducing a fourth licence for Arctic surf clams representing 25 per cent of the existing total allowable catch (TAC) for 2018.
The new entrant to the Arctic surf clam fishery will be identified via an expression of interest. Interested parties wishing to participate in this fishery must send a written proposal, to be received by DFO by 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) November 2, 2017. This licence will be issued to a new participant in 2018.
Applicants, regardless of configuration, must be majority owned by Canadians, must demonstrate an ability to comply with all the measures set out in the existing conditions of the licence, and must be an Indigenous entity located in one of the four Atlantic provinces or Quebec.
Further details on the specific criteria are found within the notification at http://www.dfo-mpo.gc.ca/decisions/fm-2017-gp/atl-31-eng.htm
The most recent stock assessment of the Grand Banks was 2010 and serves as the basis for the current TAC.
Scientific work for the Grand Banks stock area is planned and an updated stock assessment will be completed once scientific work is finalized. The Grand Banks assessment was based on a survey that took three years to complete between 2007 and 2009.
An assessment of Banquereau Bank took place in April 2017 and it is expected the results will be used as the basis for any future TAC decision or changes to management measures.