The progress of seven key issues in controlling and combating IUU Fishing in Thailand
(1-8 August 2015)
1. Legal framework
1.1 The Council of State together with related agencies are on the process of amending the Fisheries Act B.E. 2558 (2015) to be in line with the key elements in international conservation and management measures especially UNCLOS and UNFSA. In addition, the law will also be in coherence with the Fishery Management Policy (FMP) and the NPOA-IUU.
1.2 The National Council for Peace and order (NCPO) issued a NCPO’s Order No. 24/2558 for the additional measures for combating the IUU fishing which will enter into force on 05 August, 2015. The NCPO’s Order prescribes as follows
1) The registration of fishing vessel and other related vessels to fishing by the Marine Department shall be stop. This Order also prohibited the registration of any alteration of vessels to fishing vessels.
2) The prohibition of possess of five types of destructive fishing gears
2.1) push net on vessel equipped with engine, except for acetes shrimp push net.
2.2) purse seines net with mesh size less than 2.5 cm,
2.3) trawl net with cod end of mesh sizes less than 5 cm.
2.4) stow net, set bag net and stow net likes gears,
2.5) elongate collapsible traps.
Translation of the Order will be provided to DG MARE for reference soon.
1.3 Since this Order affected the legal license holders, the remedial scheme is prepared for the affected license holders, in principle, the mitigations include the alternative fishing gear programme and vessel buybacks scheme. These are subjected to consultation with the involved parties.
1.4 The transition period for the enlargement of trawl net with mesh sizes of cod end to 5 cm has been granted for 90 days (4 November, 2015).
2. Fisheries Management Policy (FMP)
2.1 The fishing vessels survey has completed since July 31, 2015 and the verification process of active fishing vessels is ongoing.
2.2 During 3-5 August, 2015, DOF organized the technical consultation with the artisanal and commercial fishers from 22 coastal provinces related to fishing vessel classification and fishing zones. Five consultations were held in Songkhla, Chumporn, Samutsakorn, Chantaburi and Krabi province covering stakeholders from 22 coastal provinces. In total 586 fisher representatives from artisanal and commercial fishers including NGOs participated in the meetings. The result of meetings showed that both artisanal and commercial fishing operations are agreed in principle to the demarcation of area between artisanal and commercial fisheries in each coastal province. DOF will further consider the suitable area for fishing of the artisanal and commercial fisheries. In addition, DOF will further consult with the fishery associations about the fishing zone for both artisanal and commercial fisheries as well as the suitable type and size of fishing gears in each fishing area.
2.3 During 1-7 August, 2015, DOF revised FMP based on consultation of FAO expert. The number of active fishing vessels operating in Thai waters will be used for the stock assessment. The stock assessment will be analyzed by the species (demersal fish, pelagic fish and anchovy) and fishing area (the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea). After the stock assessment, the optimum fleet reduction and fishing day reduction scheme will be applied.
After the technical consultation with various stakeholders from government and private sectors during 21-22 July, 2015. Revised action plan on fishery management will be incorporated into the NPOA-IUU. Other action plans have been reviewed to reflect legal framework, FMP and National Plan of Inspection.
4.1 The National Plan of Control and Inspection (NPCI) has been drafted. The details of the NPCI consist of Fisheries control; Resources for Fisheries Control including inspection and control officers’ qualification, and control activities; strategies for fisheries control; and evaluation and validation. The meeting is planned to finalize the NPCI on 12 August 2015 at DOF.
4.2 For capacity building,
DOF conducted training on control and surveillance at sea during 15 July to 04 August, 2015. Forty staff from DOF was trained.
DOF arranged a consultation meeting on Port State Measures procedures and import procedures for fifty DOF inspectors in order to ensure the effective implementation in compliance with the international measures during 6-8 August, 2015.
4.3 Observer on board development programe: DOF has been communicating with the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources of the Philippines (BFAR) asking a technical cooperation on the observer on board training for the trainers. Training is planned for the 3rd or the 4th week of August, awaiting for the Philippines response.
5. Vessel Monitoring System (VMS)
5.1 A working manual on VMS Surveillances for officers responsible for Position Control of fishing vessels is completed. DOF organized the training for DOF officers on 06 August, 2015.
5.2 Until 05 August, 2015, 1492 fishing vessels with fishing capacity > 60 GT operating in Thai waters are installed VMS. In addition, 94 fishing vessels with fishing capacity > 60 GT operating in oversea are installed VMS. The VMS Control Center of DOF are actively monitored all these vessels.
5.3 The Fisheries Monitoring Center is established and actively implemented at DOF VMS Control Center, Bangkok since the beginning of August 2015.
5.4 The VMS monitoring report is reviewed by VMS Center competent officer regularly, and reported to responsible officers and executives.
6.1 DOF conducted training on traceability system focusing on IUU regulation, traceability in aquatic animals, fish inspection at processing plant, processing statement (Annex IV) issuance procedures, catch certification issuance procedures, and procedures for verification of imported Catch certificate during 27-29 July and 06-08 August, 2015. Eighty five field officers and certification staff from the Fish Inspection and Quality Control Division, DOF were trained.
6.2 Inspection procedures of fish imported via foreign vessels, foreign carriers- both bulk and containers, Thai vessels fishing in the high seas and EEZ of third countries as well as vessels from neighboring countries have been reviewed. Working procedures are established accordingly.
6.3 Information data bases has been reviewed, two new data base will be established at the Port inspection offices and at FIQD offices, to collect all inspection report data for linking with the other existing database. Traceability Information system meeting and onsite reviewed at Port inspection offices and at FIQD offices and two tuna processing plants is scheduled during 11-14 August 2015.
7. Cooperation with third countries.
To ensure the cooperation with third countries both coastal states and flag states, the bilateral agreements –Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) or the Implementing Arrangement (IR) are planned with six countries including-the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Republic of South Korea , PR China and Taiwan, PC. After the discussion on fisheries cooperation between the DOF and the Independent State of Papua New Guinea in Singapore on 12 June, 2015, MOU between DOF and the National Fisheries Authority of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea (NFA) has been drafted and prepared for signing. In addition, during July 2015, DOF had a mission led by the Deputy Director General of DOF to the Philippines for discussion on fisheries cooperation. The Implementing Arrangement are prepared for signing. DOF plan to visit Taiwan, PC and the Republic of South Korea for discussion on the bilateral cooperation on fisheries during the 3rd and the 4th week of August, 2015.
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Department of Fisheries
11 August 2015