2 Jul 2013

Kiribati's PIPA not being fished by foreign boats - official

4:34 am on 2 July 2013

The director of Kiribati's huge Phoenix Islands Protected Area, or PIPA, has denied reports that most of the marine reserve is being fished by foreign fishing vessels.

The PIPA was created five years ago but reports around the region have claimed just a fraction of it is off limits to commercial fishers.

However Tuukabu Teroroko has told the Kiribati Independent that the reports are baseless - that there is no fishing in the PIPA.

He says they have eight countries supporting Kiribati's commitment to protecting the marine reserve.

He also says only 35 people live in the PIPA, and all of them are employed by the government, so are not permitted to sell anything from the island.