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New Fisheries vessel for Western Division

September 18, 2019 5:24 am
Picture: Supplied

Surface patrol of the Western Division has been boosted with a new 33-foot aluminum vessel, christened Dua Lei Rainima.

Powered by 500HP twin engines, the vessel was yesterday commissioned by Minister for Fisheries, Semi Koroilavesau in Lautoka, and will help surveillance efforts for the Western region, which spans 7,800 square kilometers.

This vast area the Minister says mirrors the demand for marine resources which to some extent leads to an increase in illegal and unregulated fishing practices.

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Koroilavesau says that through the provision of the new vessel, they are hoping to cover areas that are of the high risk out at sea, ensuring that fishers comply with the current fishing regulations.

Island communities in the Western Division include Vatulele, Malolo, Mamanuca, Yasawa, Viwa, and Malake, providing a significantly vast area of operation.

As part of the Ministry’s 2022 strategic priorities, Koroilavesau says this should be used as an opportunity to engage and work with communities and fishing associations to strengthen monitoring, control, and surveillance(MCS) and enforcement.

The Minister also noted that by engaging communities they would not only increase their scope of services but also see through the different layers of fishing communities to boost voluntary compliance.

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