Two crew members died after their fishing boat was rammed by a foreign cargo ship and sunk in the East China Sea on Saturday, leaving 17 crew members still missing, state broadcaster China National Radio reported.
The fishing boat, Lurongyu 58398, with 19 on board from Shandong province was hit by a Maltese cargo ship, the Catalina, in waters about 80 nautical miles east of Ningbo, Zhejiang province, around 3:40 am, Zhejiang Maritime Search and Rescue Center said.
The maritime and fishery bureau in the city of Weihai received the report of the accident at 6 am.
Two crew members were saved by a nearby fishing boat, but they later died.
Ships from the maritime authorities, the Donghai Fleet of the Chinese navy and in nearby waters are searching for the missing.
Meanwhile, the maritime search and rescue centre in the northeastern city of Dalian received two reports on Saturday morning, saying it had lost contact with one fishing boat and another that had been missing for over 50 hours was found capsized in the sea in waters east of the city.
The centre said six crew members were aboard the first boat and eight were on the second boat.
Search and rescue operations are under way.