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PNG Government to process 50 percent of Tuna catches

The Papua New Guinea Government will ensure that 50 per cent of the tuna catches are processed onshore by 2022, Fisheries Minister Dr Lino Tom, pictured, says.

He said the Government would ensure there was necessary infrastructures available with lower cost of utilities to also benefit fishing industries operating in the country utilising the infrastructures.

“Government has come up with some policy initiatives and drives and one of such is that by the year 2022, we must make sure that 50 per cent of the fish that is caught within our oceans is actually processed onshore,” Tom said.

“We are taking some proactive steps to doing that to lower the cost of doing business and increase local participation.”

Tuna is the largest contributor in the PNG fisheries sector and represents a balance of both domestic industry development and foreign access arrangements.

Tuna fisheries is primarily based on the skipjack and yellow fin tuna species with smaller quantities of bigeye and albacore.

According to information obtained from National Fisheries Authority (NFA), the country’s annual tuna catch is between 150,000 to 200,000 tonnes.

Tom launched the 7th Pacific Tuna Forum in Port Moresby last week where he acknowledged the sponsors. He said he expected more than 200 participants to attend the regional meeting which begins on Thursday.

The two-day event aimed to bring together all players in the tuna industries within PNG and the Pacific region.

They include policy makers, fisheries managers, industry players, non-governmental organisations and other relevant stakeholders.

They were expected to share issues in different aspects of the industry as well as reviewing the status of the tuna stocks and its trade. The Pacific region is the heart of the tuna industry that contributes over 60 per cent of the global harvest of the tuna species.

“It is a huge plus for the NFA and the fishing industry in general as it will provide a good opportunity to highlight the state of tuna management and development within PNG and region to the new government,” he said.

The Pacific Tuna Forum is an initiative of the national government through the NFA.....


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