21 Mar 2013

Palau banks on tourism to fund fishing conservation plan

7:09 am on 21 March 2013

Palau's President says any money lost as a result of banning commercial fishing in the country's waters could be made up for through increased tourism revenue.

Tommy Remengesau has proposed banning commercial fishing in Palau's exclusive economic zone, and turning the country's waters into a marine reserve the size of France.

Mr Remengesau says foreign fishing vessels are exploiting Palau's marine resources, and the country would rather protect these resources and earn money from eco-tourism.

He says commercial fisheries make huge profits, and only a fraction of that is returned to Palau.

"Other people may have their own policy to get revenue from fishing, but we feel that it's a very small drop in the bucket and so it's not worth exploitation of our resources."