Tonga’s fisheries sector records more than 70%
Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 09/05/2017
Tonga’s fish exports last year was over TOP$10 million, a 54% percent increase from the previous year.
More than 17,000 tonnes of fish was exported overseas last year, representing 73% of all catches in the kingdom.
CEO of Fisheries – Dr. Tu’ikolongahau Halafihi made the statement during forum fisheries committee FFC 102 underway in Australia.
He said, the sector is increasing the availability of fish on the local markets by requiring all catches from foreign vessels for sale in Tonga.
The kingdom is facing challenges as the sea cucumber fishery is closed for up to five years due to over-fishing.
On a similar development, Dr. Halafihi said by the end of this financial year the Fisheries sector hopes to have more than 30 Special Management Areas with the long term plan of over 100 to be established.
Fisheries is optimistic about aqua-culture still in their development stages for potential industries including sea weed, pearls, clams, sea cucumber and milk fish.
A major challenge of this sector is seeking funds and technical assistance from development partners.
Accompanying the CEO is his Deputy – Vilimoo Fakalolo, at the meeting will end on May 17th.
© Radio and Television Tonga News