While assuring that Sri Lanka was committed to combat IUU fishing, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said Sri Lanka would prohibit destructive fishing gear and introduce an effective fisheries management system through vessel monitoring and enforcement of relevant laws.
Minister Samaraweera addressing the ‘Our Ocean Conference 2016’ said that Sri Lanka would conduct a survey of fish resources and establish a robust fisheries information system by 2018.
“It is in our interest to secure and ensure sustainable fishing in the country. In recognition of the positive steps taken by Sri Lanka in addressing issues related to IUU fishing, the European Council, in June this year, lifted a ban imposed on the export of fisheries products from Sri Lanka,” he said.
Minister Samaraweera called for the discontinuation and banning of all fishing methods that harm marine eco-systems, worldwide, in particular, bottom trawling.
He said Sri Lanka was perhaps one of the few countries in the world where the Head of State himself holds the portfolio of Environment, given its vital importance for our country, and to ensure that Sri Lanka played its part in a responsible manner on issues of Climate Change and Environment in a global context.