Court’s role vital in curbing illegal fishing: NFA


THE courts play an important role in ensuring those who commit serious fisheries offences are appropriately penalised, according to National Fisheries Authority (NFA).
This was highlighted at the Fisheries Judicial Conference in Port Moresby last week.
“The single most significant threat to the long-term sustainability of marine resources is the issue of illegal unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing,” NFA said in a statement.
“Fisheries continues to share its experience of IUU with the judiciary for it to better understand so that fisheries matters including prosecutions and their outcomes, and how the associated fisheries offences can be resolved on timely manners.
“Courts play an important role in translating the intent and spirit of fisheries laws and regulations, having regard to the seriousness of fisheries offences and application of appropriate penalties for offenders.”
NFA said the conference would enable members of the judiciary and the magisterial services to recognise the importance of fisheries resources to PNG and its people, including national revenue, food security and for achieving development aspirations.
“Participants of the conference are reminded to be mindful of the impact of IUU fishing on fisheries, conservation and management measures, and its imminent threat to food security in PNG, as a coastal state.”
The NFA said by the end of the conference, judges and magistrates would have good background information on international, regional, and national fishery policy regimes and practices.
Meanwhile, the conference is a follow-on from previous conferences organised by Forum Fisheries Agency.