Ministers from the Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) launched their 12th annual meeting in Majuro Wednesday. President Hilda Heine recognized the organization for growing fisheries revenue of members nations from $60 million to nearly $500 million in seven years. She urged the fisheries leaders not to be complacent because of PNA’s success, but instead to “capitalize on it” by finding ways to add value to the fishery.
The key to PNA’s success, she said, is the unity and mutual respect of the members. Heine announced the RMI as host of the PNA Office will build a new facility for PNA in line with its ongoing and future needs. She urged continuing strengthening of the PNA Office as the administrator for PNA nations.
PNA CEO Ludwig Kumoru echoed this point, saying that for PNA to maximize benefits to the members, institutional strengthening of both the PNA Office and of member fisheries departments is essential. “We need to be creative to get more out of the resource,” Kumoru said. “We need strong institutions to do this.”
The meeting runs through Friday at Marshall Islands Resort’s Melele Room.
Earlier in the week, PNA officials met to finalize the agenda for the ministers’ policy meeting.
“The annual PNA Ministerial meeting will hear stock assessments on the state of all tuna species in our fishery, updates on business developments and the Vessel Day Scheme (VDS), and then adopt policy to guide conservation and management of our fishery,” said Kumoru. “PNA members have for years been leading efforts to sustainably manage our fishery for the benefit of current and future generations.
“Our Vessel Day Scheme works as a conservation method by limiting fishing effort while affording our members increasing benefits from our fishery, not only in revenue but also in spin-off business ventures such as small scale tuna canning.”
Read more about this in the June 23, 2017 edition of the Marshall Islands Journal.