Somalia: Fishery Minister claims foreign fishing ships in Puntland are lawful
GAROWE, Puntland- Puntland Minister of Fishery and Marine Resources has revealed that fishing ships operating in the territorial waters in the region are legal and registered from the Ministry, this comes following media reports of uncontrolled marine exploitation from fishing trawlers, Garowe Online reports.
Earlier, GO has published a report indicating that dozen foreign trawlers have arrived to Bossaso Port, aiming to reach a deal with businessmen and officials from the Ministry to carry out fishing activities amid concerns of illicit fishing practices that damage marine resources.
During the press conference attend by Fishery Minister, Abdinur Elmi Nuur, Fishery Deputy Minister, State Minister of Fishery and state parliamentarians, Nuur confirmed that 7 fishing ships owned by Djibouti-based companies, have arrived to the Port and they were legally registered to do fishing activities.
“This week there was news circulating in the media about the fishing ships in the Port, however, I commend the work of the media because whatever the report is right or wrong they shed light on important issues that people must know about it,” said the Minister.
Additionally, Nuur revealed that the Ministry is responsible of protecting the marine resources from illegal practices and exploitation by foreign ships that are not registered.
On the other hand, the Minister has claimed that the Ministry has generated more revenues than the previous administration. “In 2014 the Ministry collected $ 1,400,000, in 2015 we generated more than $ 2,000,000 and we got higher figure in 2016,” said Nuur.
His claim comes amid failure of the current administration led by President Abdiwali Mohamed Ali “Gaas” to pay the salaries of civil servants and security forces for over 8 months.
Moreover, the administration failed also to execute emergency response to drought victims in the region or implement development projects in the region amid claims of generating higher revenues.
Since the election of President Ali, the activities of fishing ships in Puntland region has increased and this facilitated by officials from the current administration and close allies to the President.
The collapse of Somalia's central government in 1991 and absence of strong institutions in the country has opened opportunity for foreign fishing trawlers to exploit marine resources that endangered the livelihood of coastal community and natural resources.