JAKARTA, January 16-The Indonesian Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF), the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the U.S. National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have partnered to implement the Port State Measures Agreement (PSMA), which requires countries to conduct port inspections of fishing vessels that are suspected of being engaged in Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing in order to prevent their fish products from landing in ports, in Indonesia.
“Since three years ago, more and more illegal fishing vessels are being confiscated. Despite these efforts, IUU fishing remains a persistent challenge, and a global collective effort is required to effectively overcome it,” said USAID Environment Office Director Matthew Burton. “Indonesia has made tremendous efforts in combating IUU fishing. The U.S. Government’s partnership with the Government of Indonesia is designed to accelerate the implementation of PSMA and block the flow of IUU-caught fish into national and international markets.”
USAID has invited a team of NOAA experts to conduct a PSMA training on January 16-25, 2018, in Jakarta, involving participants from fisheries surveillance officers, port officers from five ports committed to fighting IUU fishing: Jakarta, Bungus, Bitung, Ambon and Sukabumi, and relevant units of the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries. The training will enhance Indonesia’s ability to provide high quality port inspections and prevent, deter and eliminate IUU fishing.
“The Advanced PSMA training is expected to develop skills and improve understanding on the minimum standard of PSMA amongst the fisheries surveillance officers and port officers in Indonesia as mandated in the Presidential Regulation No.43/206. This is essential to achieve stronger consolidation and synergy of activities in reinforcing the nation’s sovereignty and combatting IUU fishing practices in Indonesia, “ Nilanto Perbowo, the Ministry’s Acting Director of Marine and Fisheries Resources Surveillance (PSDKP), said today at the opening of the Advanced PSMA Training in Aston Pluit Hotel, North Jakarta.
The eight-day advanced training, a continuation of a pilot PSMA training conducted in August 2016, incorporates hands-on learning through simulated boardings of IUU vessels, which will give training participants a solid understanding of the inspection procedures and ethics.
“We hope that the participants will be able to perform thorough PSM inspections to determine whether the vessels requesting entry into its port have engaged in IUU fishing or IUU fishing related activities and gain in-depth knowledge and skills on port service authorization,” added Todd Dubois, Assistant Director of NOAA’s Office of Law Enforcement.
IUU fishing has been rampant in Indonesian waters, and approximately 25 percent of Indonesian fish are lost annually to IUU fishing. In 2015, MMAF estimated that losses from IUU fishing cost Indonesia’s economy approximately US $20 billion each year.
The Port State Measures Agreement is the first ever legally binding international treaty focused specifically on Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing. Both the United States and Indonesia were among the original nations that ratified the agreement, helping it go into effect globally on June 5, 2016.
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