Members of the South Asian Fisheries Development Center (SEAFDEC) are here in Cebu for a five-day meeting of which purpose is to protect the region’s fish supply.
The 45th SEAFDEC council meeting, which is hosted by the Philippines, kicked off last Monday in Radisson Blu Hotel. One of the agenda in this year’s council is to discuss among the member-countries the new technologies that the fishers can use in their fishing methods.
Department of Agriculture (DA) spokesperson Salvador Salacup, in his speech during the opening ceremony, highlighted the importance of fish security in every nation, saying that SEAFDEC was first and foremost established with that goal in hand.
“It is very important we secure fish security but then the challenges are how to maintain this and how to sustain measures to ensure that we will have abundant fish in the generations to come,” Salacup said.
Salacup also mentioned climate change as one challenged that SEAFDEC and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources are facing these days. “We experience different seasonalities now, which thereby affect the productivity levels of our fishery resources,” he said.
Meanwhile, Asis Perez, director of BFAR, said the country’s fish supply is now improving following a strict implementation of the heavy fishing ban all over the country. He said if in the past 40 years, the volume of fish catch had dwindled, the situation is slowly recovering.
“We have now seen increase in the production starting last year. Our export for tuna has increased by 40 percent from 2011 to 2012,” he said.
Apart from the Philippines, member-nations who were also present in thepast three days were Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.