THURSDAY UPDATE: Just a quick note after yesterday's blog: just talked to Alberto Diaz at the Consulate General's office. He said they are working on an official statement for WON, and that we should get it by this Monday's deadline. He also referred back to the press release (see below) when asked the question, "Do private boaters need an FMM?" My other big questions: "where can private boaters even get this FMM? Is IT available in Tijuana?"
So far, trying to put a story together continues to have plenty of questions, but no hard answers.
It's hard to put a dart in when and where the face of fishing Northern Baja within 24 miles of land changed so drastically. But the press release from the Consulate General of Mexico in San Diego from March 12 of this year--which is the only publicly released document most anglers have seen--was certainly the most confusing piece on the subject.
In order to talk about the FMM issue (which also includes needing a SCT Permit for sportboats) everything has to start with the release. It's in the blog below, with highlights I made that put an emphasis on yesterday's blog points. Anyone who would like the pdf of the release can e mail me at email@example.com
In the meantime, there are still more questions than answers. Can long range boats fish islands like Cedros on multi-day trips? That's part of what I'm trying to figure out. I have a call in with Alberto Diaz, the media contact at the Consulate General's office. He's supposed to call me back at 11:30 a.m. When he does, I'll update the blog.
Consulate General of Mexico in San Diego
Press Release # 06/2012
March 12th, 2012
REQUIREMENTS TO ENTER MEXICO FOR RECREATIONAL SPORTSFSHING ACTIVITIES
In order to respond to recent requests for information regarding the procedures to be followed, and the permits to be obtained by foreign tourists entering Mexican waters for sport fishing activities, the Consulate General of Mexico in San Diego communicates the following:
There is no visa or new immigration requirement for sport fishing purposes. U.S. citizens, permanent residents of the United States, and foreigners who carry any type of valid U.S. visa do not require a Mexican visa to enter the country as tourists for a period of up to 180 days.
According to current regulations, US citizens that wish to enter Mexico for any purpose, including sport fishing, must: (i) present themselves before migration authorities in a port open for international transit of persons. Ensenada is presently the nearest Mexican seaport to San Diego that offers this service; (ii) fill out the Multiple Migratory Form (FMM); (iii) present a valid Passport or any other valid form of government issued id; and make the tourist immigration rights payment of $294 (Two hundred and ninety four Mexican pesos)
Mexican law considers the possible participation of consignee agencies. Their function is to support all administrative procedures, such as gathering information, filling out forms and payment of fees. The hiring of the aforementioned services for recreational or sport fishing vessels for private use is not mandatory. Fees charged by consignee agencies are not part of the government rates applicable to the issuance of various permits.
It is also required for every person that intends to enter Mexico for sport fishing activities to obtain the individual sport fishing permit, issued by the National Commission of Aquaculture and Fisheries (CONAPESCA). This permit may be processed at: http://e5cinco.conapesca.gob.mx. Fees as of January 2012 are:
1 day $110 Mexican pesos
1 week $ 276 Mexican pesos
1 year $ 553 Mexican pesos
Excursion $ 787 Mexican pesos
Commercial recreational or sport vessels, Mexican or foreign-registered, that will make use of any Mexican port must obtain a permit for the provision of tourism services. This is issued by the Secretariat of Communications and Transportation (SCT) and must be requested in advance to the corresponding Port Captain’s Office. This requirement is not applicable to private vessels that engage in sport fishing in Mexican waters.
The Secretariat of the Navy (SEMAR) is empowered to carry out inspections in local and foreign vessels navigating Mexican territorial waters in order to ensure compliance of applicable regulations.
The promotion of tourism to our country is one of the high priorities of the Mexican government. Information will be provided in a timely manner about new measures to be taken to facilitate the entrance of foreign tourist to our territory, including those tourists that wish to do sport fishing in Mexican territorial waters.
(Blogger's note: so where's the information?)