The National, Friday May 29th, 2015
By DEBORAH TAUMPSON
THE National Fisheries Authority yesterday advised of the changes to the Fisheries Management Act 1998.
Acting managing director Philip Polon said the amendment was done to comply with the European Union and to maintain its market after the NFA was slapped with a yellow card by EU in June last year.
Speaking at the opening of a workshop in Port Moresby yesterday, Polon said the NFA has undertaken a number of reforms to address key concerns from the EU, including the legislation, tuna management plan and national plan of action.
The workshop is to create awareness on the reforms NFA is undertaking to address the issues raised by EU in their yellow card notification. “Our paramount interest is to maintain the market with the European Union,” Polon said.
“That is the only market we need to protect in order to make the industry operate in PNG because we send 99 per cent of our tuna to EU markets.
“Without that market many of the businesses in the industry would not be able to operate in the country.” He said the amendment to the Act was approved in January and a copy was shared with EU to see whether it captured their interests.
“The European Union gave NFA the thumbs up in terms of the changes done to the Act in March during their consultation,” Polon said.
“The implementation of the amendments of the Act will be effective as of June 1, we will begin implementing the Act in terms of illegal unreported and unregulated fishing and conservation and management measures.”
Deputy manager Ludwig Kumoru said: “We (NFA) have done everything, change tuna management plans, we are optimistic that when we go for the final review with EU in July.”
The two-day workshop will end today with presentations from each business unit within NFA on the reforms.