PNG barred from fishing in high seas

Business, Normal

The National, Friday September 25th, 2015

 By SHIRLEY MAULUDU, in Nadi, Fiji

PAPUA New Guinea boats will no longer be allowed to fish in the high sea areas in Eastern Pacific, Fisheries and Marine Resources Minister Mao Zeming says.

He said the boats would not be allowed into areas beyond waters under the Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) vessel day scheme.

Zeming explained that the activity in those areas has resulted in increased effort and over supply to Asian canners contributing to depressed fish price, lost revenues from access and domestic catch. “I supported the idea to close all fishing activities in the high seas, including bunkering, which for some serious concerns over IUU (illegal unreported unregulated) and trafficking must come into zone and under PNG control,” he said in a paid advertisement.

Zeming said all state agreements and access agreements should be reviewed to adopt and implement the reforms undertaken under the EU yellow card review to deter and eliminate the potential for IUU fishing practices. To capture increased benefits from fisheries activities and have more control over the resource, Zeming said it was only proper for the resource owners to give access to vessels to catch on their behalf for processing in regional factories.

“For PNG and the Pacific region, maximised benefits can be achieved by jointly controlling the resource and encouraging regional economic integration through cross-border investments, labour mobility and value addition by having regional processing hubs,” he said.