A long standing dispute between Australia and Japan looks set to find resolution this week, following the signing of an agreement that designates tuna fishing quotas to Japanese fishing boats.

The disagreement erupted over Japan's controversial "scientific fishing programme," which appeared to contravene guidelines laid out in the Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna (CCSBT). This tripartite commission had been signed by Japan, Australia and New Zealand. 

According to Kyodo News, Japanese fishing boats will this year be allowed to catch 6,421 tons of southern blue-fin tuna, an increase of 356 tons from the quota agreed for 2000.

Australia Conservation Minister Wilson Tuckey also announced yesterday that the long-standing ban on Japanese tuna fishing vessels entering Australian ports has been removed.