Increase in the seizure of «tourist fish»

Tourist FishTourist fish seized by Norwegian Customs. Photo: Tolletaten.

Increase in the seizure of «tourist fish» in Norway

Norwegian Customs have seized over eight tonnes of so-called «tourist fish» so far in 2019. The quantity is more than the total seizure in 2018 and also more than seized at the end of June 2017.

The Norwegian Customs Agency seizes «tourist fish» at border stations throughout Norway. The largest amount is seized in the north of Norway, where customs officers at the border stations in Finnmark and Troms have seized over six tonnes of «tourist fish» so far this year.

 “We see that some of the transports come at night. There are often four to six foreign nationals in each car bringing too much fish with them. The customs officers mainly seize fish fillets, the quantity that is seized thus represents only a small part of the actual catch,” Head of Department of the Customs Agency, Atle Joakimsen, explains.

While German citizens were previously in the majority among those who brought too much fish out of Norway, the customs officers now find that several citizens of several European countries are caught for smuggling of «tourist fish».

“Several Belgians, Lithuanians, Poles, Czechs and Ukrainians are caught in 2019,” Joakimsen informs.

Both fines and confiscation of the catch await those who are caught.



Ten or twenty kilograms of fish products

“When you leave Norway, you can bring with you ten kg of fish or fish products from your own fishing. If you have been fishing under the auspices of a registered fishing company, the export quota is a maximum of twenty kg of fish or fish products, provided that the organized fishing can be documented,” Joakimsen continues, adding:

“An export quota is valid for seven days, which means you have to wait that long before you can bring another export quota out of Norway.”

“The quota applies per person, both Norwegians and foreigners, who leave Norway. As a traveller, you can only bring your ‘own’ fish along. You cannot bring fish on behalf of others not travelling with you. Trophy fish forms part of the quota. The quota includes fish and fish products such as fish fillets or the like,” the Head of Department explains.

You cannot export goods (including fish and fishery products) worth more than NOK 5,000 per person, without the goods being declared customs before crossing the border. You must personally ensure that the goods are declared.

There are exceptions to the export quotas of ten or twenty kgs. The quota limitation does not apply to freshwater fish, salmon, trout and char which you export from your own fishing, nor fish that you have legally purchased from traders or from fishing vessels listed in the Directorate of Fisheries register in Norway.

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