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Koroilavesau clears air on customary fishing licence

Luke Nacei
Friday, March 09, 2018

Minister for Fisheries Semi Koroilavesau has confirmed there were no fees charged for fishermen or members of the public who applied for licence in customary fishing.

This was after Opposition Member of Parliament Parmod Chand, on Wednesday, questioned Mr Koroilavesau in Parliament on why were the fishermen, who applied for fishing licences, were asked to pay access fees for qoliqoli on an undetermined figure.

Mr Koroilavesau requested for a withdrawal of the question as consultation process and processes were still ongoing.

"I would like to reiterate the common work done by the Ministry of Fisheries is only to review the current licence fees," Mr Koroilavesau said.

"The review of the coastal licence fees will allow us to legislate the portion of table fee that would go directly to the customary fishing rights owners for the harvest of marine resources within their area of customary fishing rights.

"This work was approved last year and is currently at its consultative stages."

He said there were four different tiers of licensing that the Ministry of Fisheries was looking to finalise.

"We are looking to review the validity of access period to reflect 36-month expiry period which will commence on the date on which the licence is issued. This will help fishers to secure financial support," he said.

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