Meet to focus on processing hubs

Business, Normal

The National, Tuesday September 8th, 2015

 A PACIFIC fishery roadmap to be presented during the Pacific Islands Forum leaders’ meeting highlights the concept of regional processing hub, Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency says. 

Deputy director-general Wez Norris said an area that would be highlighted was to acknowledge potential that the region had in processing fishery resources caught within 

the region. “We are visiting the concept of regional processing hubs. Recognising that not all Pacific Island countries can have a cannery or plant. 

“But there is no reason why there cannot be collaboration between Pacific Island countries so that when country A requires that, all of its fish gets landed into country B for processing. You can have some shared benefits from that,” Norris told a workshop on Saturday.

He added that the roadmap would look at various ways the region could capitalise on sustainable fisheries. 

“Things like prioritising supply of raw materials to processing factories within the region, rather than simply allowing it to be taken outside the region,” Norris said. 

Another area to be highlighted was to enhance cooperation within the region to fight illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. 

“Continuing to break the cycle where fishing is dominated by and fishing rights are held by foreign fishing companies and distant fishing states and vesting those authorities into the hands of Pacific Island countries,” he said.

The Foreign Fisheries Committee Ministers will present “a regional roadmap for sustainable pacific fisheries” during the leaders’ forum meeting in Port Moresby on progress so far and what still needed to be done. 

Norris said the roadmap followed the “Future of Pacific Fisheries” study done five years ago, which outlined potential scenarios for Pacific fisheries to develop by 2025.