The Jakarta Post, 19/02/2014.
The Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry on Tuesday announced a plan aimed at revitalizing fishery management in the country and to help it conform with the Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries Management (EAFM).
In the first phase, the management plan will be implemented in the waters of Aru, Arafura and the east of the Timor Sea, dubbed the fishery management area (WPP) 718 region.
“The ministry will revitalize fishery management in all areas of Indonesia, starting with WPP 718 because Aru, Arafura and the east of the Timor Sea have the most fishery potential in Indonesia,” Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Minister Sharif Cicip Sutardjo said before the announcement of the management plan in Jakarta on Tuesday.
WPP 718, which is administratively governed by the Maluku, West Papua and Papua provinces, is the first of Indonesia’s 11 fishery management areas to be given the treatment that will be implemented in accordance with the 32 indicators of the EAFM consisting of six domains, namely fish resources, habitat and ecosystem, fishing techniques, social, economy and institutional.
The EAFM aims to maintain sustainable fisheries, as ensuring the long-term health of the marine ecosystem is the determinant factor to ensure a sustainable yield of commercial harvests from the sea.
Fishermen will be supervised and given counselling on sustainable fisheries by the National Working Group on the EAFM, which includes the Directorate of Fisheries Resources, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Indonesia as well as the Research Center of Marine and Coastal Resources.
Sharif said that Indonesia was already late in implementing the EAFM in comparison to other countries such as Spain and China, which have already applied the fishing opening and closing season depending on the species and the area.
“Indonesia opened its waters to all businesspeople and fishermen to capture fishes from, but we must implement the ‘open-close’ fishing system so that fish may spawn before they are caught so fish population will increase,” Sharif said.
Director general of Fisheries Gellwynn Jusuf said that in the implementation, the central government would work together with local administrations as well as organizations and research centers. “Such integrated cooperation on fishery management is the first of its kind in Indonesia,” said Gellwynn.
According to Gellwynn, the fishery management plan aims to be beneficial for local administrations, the central government as well as businesses to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU) and to promote the implementation of the ecosystem approach to implement the blue economy, which aims to fulfil basic needs where the waste becomes the input.
“WPP 718 contains one of the world’s most fertile ecosystems; its shrimp potential is 45 percent of the national potential, and also contributes 20 percent to the total national fishery potential.
However, it also has experienced the biggest loss due to illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, an estimated Rp 17 trillion (US$1.4 billion) in losses,” said Sharif.
According to the Central Statistics Agency (BPS), marine capture fishery production in Maluku, West Papua and Papua in 2012 was 537,262 tons, 120,329 tons and 281,480 tons, respectively.
Sharif added that marine capture fishery production in Indonesia would be higher without IUU. He stated that with close supervision from the Maritime and Fisheries Resources Monitoring Task Force and the local administrations in the WPP 718 area, he was upbeat that the implementation of RPP-WPP 718 would increase Indonesia’s marine capture fishery production.
SOURCE: Jakarta Post