The Fisheries department in association with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) today facilitated the handing over of a five year artisanal management plan.
The quiet ceremony was conducted in the Ministry of Agriculture’s Boardroom and was attended by The Honourable Minister of Agriculture, Noel Holder, Chief Fisheries Officer Mr. Denzil Roberts and WWF Country Manager Aiesha Williams.
Minister Holder understanding the need to gain immediate control of this subsector gave an urgent task to the fisheries department during his feature address
“I charge the fisheries department to commence immediately to implement this management plan as we are quite aware of the necessity to bring this fishing sub sector under the necessary management measures that will make it more effective and sustainable. I would therefore accept this Artisanal Management plan with pleasure and approve its immediate implementation”
The Artisanal or small-scale fishery sector provides food in both rural and urban areas and has been growing in importance as a source of employment in these certain communities. It has also seen marked growth in income and export earnings. However, so as to properly manage the sector, a number of changes will have to occur as Minister Holder points out.
“The Government of Guyana is committed to developing a thriving fishing sector while at the same time promoting climate smart fishing practices, sustainable fishing practices and all the management measures that are needed to ensure that our fisheries will be here for generations to come. However, I must point out that for effective management, changes will have to be made, fishing gear will have to be modified to be more environmentally friendly. Furthermore, the introduction of closed seasons and the licensing of all vessels will be enforced.”
While it is expected that most persons will be resistant to changes, it is expected that through awareness programmes facilitated by the Fisheries Department and various Cooperatives, persons will become adaptive to the changes one by one.