Ministries of Agriculture Fisheries and Environment ( MAFE) Steven Victor said tuna will contribute to Palau in another important way aside from the sale of licenses to fishing operators-increasing food security.
Victor said that there are other benefits that flow from tuna which is ensuring that the community has access to fish for sustaining the health of the country.
“To me, the important part will be the in the offshore fishery that has not been very well served as food security,” he said.
He said MAFE is prioritizing a food secure community.
“And to me, that’s a bigger priority for the ministry to track progress. How do we ensure that food security continues to be maintained?
Victor said that it is also MAFE’s priority that fish entering the domestic market will be at an affordable price.
He also said tapping into tuna for food security will also alleviate the pressure on coastal fisheries.
Minister said tuna will also play an important role to the communities as a healthier option to food rather than continue to eat imported, unhealthy produce.
Victor said that is why it’s important to develop the domestic fishery, making sure that sustainable catch from the EEZ will also be allocated to national food security.
The Pacific Community (SPC) has reported that by 2035, 25 percent of all fish required for the food security of Pacific Island people will need to be supplied by tuna because coastal fisheries will not be sufficient to meet the domestic needs. (Island Times)