Fiji Time: 1:33 AM on Tuesday 26 May

Fiji Times Logo

/ Front page / News

Costly exercise

Jone Kalouniviti
Saturday, February 08, 2014

THE requirements of the new Maritime Transport Decree might be just too expensive for small craft and boat owners

It will cost $138.75 to have a boat surveyed, registered and licensed this year and another $600 more for each individual to get a Class 6 certification from the Fiji National University, to allow for operation in open waters.

"We understand this is to improve the safety of the industry but right now we fear that by March this year we will not be allowed to make a living." said Yasawa villager Manasa Katalau.

"We don't earn enough but by March we have to use over $1000 to register our boats, and upgrade our self to Class 6 level to be able to operate."

Mr Katalau, 49, is a diver from Teci and is among many boat owners from the Yasawa Group trying to scrape around for $600 to attain the FNU certification.

"After March 5, the fees will be back to the normal cost of $432.25 but even right now I can tell you no one here has Class 6 level, we are trying to get it before March."

Another boat owner, Ame Tabaiwalu from Waya Island, has registered both his boats but now has to find a way to get his certification.

"Most of us right now only have boat captain certification," he said.

"If we do not get Class 6 then we cannot operate past Bekana Island just off the Lautoka port."

The concern, Tabaiwalu says, is when they will need to gather food, fish in the open ocean or even make trips for medical reasons.

A team from Maritime Safety Authority of Fiji will travel the country from this week to register small crafts and conduct awareness on the decree.





Fiji Times Front Page Thumbnail

Kaila Front Page ThumbnailFiji Times & Kaila Frontpage PDF Downloads

Use the free Acrobat Reader to view.

Today's Most Read Stories

  1. US Mercy visits Fiji
  2. Size doesn't matter for Labalaba
  3. Ryan's attention turns to Rio Olympics
  4. Uncertain future
  5. Three women in custody over alleged vehicle theft
  6. Erectile dysfunction
  7. $200m bill
  8. Villager questions equal distribution of lease money
  9. 25-year-old man dies in road accident
  10. Knows no limits

Top Stories this Week

  1. Heroes of the night Friday (22 May)
  2. Dream run Tuesday (19 May)
  3. Tuwai wins top award Tuesday (19 May)
  4. Top cop foils robbery attempt Friday (22 May)
  5. Payout for team Thursday (21 May)
  6. Ratu Naiqama suspended Friday (22 May)
  7. Behind closed doors Tuesday (19 May)
  8. Probe on officials Wednesday (20 May)
  9. US Mercy visits Fiji Monday (25 May)
  10. Ratu Naiqama apologises Friday (22 May)