Monday, June 13, 2011

Marshalls Considering Shark Legislation

MAJURO — The Marshall Islands Marine Resources Authority is drafting legislation to control currently unregulated shark finning and sea cucumber harvesting in this north Pacific country.

The goal, said fisheries Director Glen Joseph, is to have the new legislation ready for introduction to the Marshall Islands parliament at its August session.

The fisheries department imposed a ban on shark fishing and sea cucumber harvesting earlier this year over concern about the level of unregulated exploitation of shark fins and sea cucumbers.

Because the August session is the last before the November national election, the fisheries department is keen to get the legislation introduced and passed before the election recess, Joseph said.

One of fishery department¹s aims is to reduce the amount of shark “by-catch” that longliners get when fishing for tuna. This can be accomplished in part by requiring improvements to fishing gear used by longliners, he said.

Printed in the Marianas Variety on June 10, 2011

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