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Palau Rejects Taiwanese Gift Of Purse Seiner Vessel Palau, March 22, 13

PNA members state Palau has rejected the offer by a Taiwanese company, Fong Haur Fishery Co., Ltd., to build, deliver, manage and operate at no cost to Palau at least one purse seiner fishing vessel.
The rejection was a result of the recommendation by Chief of Staff Elbuchel Sadang,.
Following the announcement of President Remengesau’s intent to ban all commercial fishing in Palau waters Sadang has suggested to reject bids as regards building and operating purse seiner vessel for Palau.

Sadang stated that the administration will be pursuing policies that favor the preservation of the natural resources of the Republic in pursuit of an economic model that will support the country for generations.
Purse seining, according to the chief of staff, is a method of fishing that is totally contradictory to the environmental preservation policies that the Republic has pursued in the past and that the Republic intends to pursue in the future.
Sadang said former President Toribiong once declared Palau as shark sanctuary and his predecessor, who is again the current president, also enacted laws banning shark finning, use of steel leaders and other measures protecting turtles, dugongs, rays and dolphins. These actions by the presidents have reportedly made Palau a prominent international leader in environmental conservation and protected some of the country’s most precious natural resources.
“Purse seining is a brutally efficient fishing method that is sure to devastate our fish population, may put certain endangered species of marine animals at risk within the exclusive economic zone and will severely damage the international reputation that Palau has built as an environmentally conscious society,” Sadang said.
On February 13, the government was scheduled to open proposals for purse seiner for Palau. The bidding for purse seiner vessel for Palau was opened under the Toribiong administration.
“However, the Republic has recently conveyed to the procurement office the intent to pursue a policy of environmental conservation. It has been determined that this policy of environmental conservation precludes purse seine fishing within the exclusive economic zone of the Republic. As a result, even if your bid did state a definite price, that tender would still be rejected as a project that is contrary to the best interest of the Republic,” Isaack stated in a letter.