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Fisheries Ministry identifies gaps in Lau

March 8, 2021 4:35 pm

The Ministry of Fisheries has identified gaps in its services in remote communities of the Lau group.

During a recent trip, Permanent Secretary, Pene Baleinabuli, admitted that services need improvement, especially after a natural disaster.

Vanuavatu Deputy Chair for Development Projects, Jokini Taoi, says many people in Lau are now relying on fisheries for daily livelihood and income and most of them are requesting solar freezers to be able to store their catch for longer periods.

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“We have very limited resources with us but if we have this solar freezer and we will be able to go and fish, bring it over and sell it over to the urban areas.”

The Permanent Secretary for Fisheries says the government will complement the efforts made by these communities and will look into providing for solar freezers, boats and fishing nets among other needs.

He says the Ministry currently has 24 fully functional ice-plants across the country.

The people of Lau are finding difficulty accessing government services and Baleinabuli has admitted there is only one service centre in Lakeba and their main problem is transportation.

“So I’ve heard on this trip that the 23 footer boat that we have is not enough to reach out to islands like Komo and Moce, perhaps those are the areas that we need to support. We have some presence here in Lau, we now have to ensure the transportation issue is sorted.”

Meanwhile, fish focused communities in Lau will be receiving assistance through a United Nations $1 million initiative.

UN Resident Coordinator, Sanaka Samarashina, says this will be at a household level and they will target those who lost fishing equipment during the recent cyclones.

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