6 Jun 2005

Pacific Fisheries meeting calls for greater benefits to islands

7:26 pm on 6 June 2005

Leaders at a regional forum fisheries meeting in the Marshall Islands are calling for more political and financial support to managing fishing resources.

Major changes are being tabled at the Forum Fisheries agency meeting in Majuro, that would allow island nations to reap more benefits.

The Forum Fisheries Agency director, Feleti Teo, says he hopes fisheries ministers will adopt and launch a new strategic plan by the end of the week.

But he said for the agency to achieve their goals under the plan, they need more assistance.

The Forum Fisheries Agency represents all independent island nations as well as Australia and New Zealand, to monitor fishing within exclusive economic zones.

About 2-billion US dollars in tuna is taken out of Pacific waters annually, with more than 90-percent of that netted by foreign fishing nations.