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Consensus Among Industry Groups To Limit Tuna Fishing Effort

According to Tri-Marine’s Phil Roberts, discussions at the Pacific Tuna Forum Conference revealed consensus among tuna industry groups that fishing effort in the Pacific needs to be limited in order to protect fish stocks. Key industry players met to discuss how to increase investment within the region in order to implement this change.

Phil Roberts

The conference was organized by the National Fisheries Authority of Papua New Guinea in cooperation with Infofish. Negotiations between attendees were focused towards how to broaden the tuna investment base within the Pacific.

Phil Roberts, Managing Director of Tri-Marine International PTE in Singapore, criticized the PNA Vessel Day Scheme (VDS). He outlined that while focusing on promoting sustainability, the amount of registered fishing vessels had increased from 200 to 290 over the last five years. Tri-Marine International is the world’s biggest tuna company, trading around USD 1 billion worth of tuna per year.

Roberts urged the PNA to take action and said: “PNA have authority and sovereign rights over their zones. They are in an extraordinarily powerful position to control this fishery.”
The member countries of PNA include the Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Papua New Guinea.

Roberts added that Tri-Marine was hoping that authorities of these PNA member nations would eventually force a limit.