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FAO assists Sri Lanka in drafting new Fisheries Bill

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Representatives from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, including its Deputy Director General Manuel Barange, met Fisheries Minister Douglas Devananda at the Fisheries Ministry, on February 21.

Speaking at the meeting, the Minister stated that the draft of the new Bill that has been prepared with the assistance of FAO would raise the local fishing community to the international level. The opinions and proposals of the fisheries organizations will be included in the final draft and then it will be submitted to the Cabinet of Ministers.

Once the Cabinet grants the approval, measures will be taken to present the Bill in Parliament and to implement the Act once it is passed in Parliament. The Minister thanked the FAO for its contribution to preparing the new Bill.

The Minister stated that he is grateful to the FAO for its assistance and contribution to developing the fisheries industry in Sri Lanka and to securing the post-harvest of fish and to improve food security in the country as well.

The Minister said that the assistance and instructions of FAO are needed for aquatic culture.

He also said that marine resources may diminish in the future, and requested the FAO to assist the fish culture in cages that is being carried out at the international level, especially the culture of fish such as ‘motha’.

The Minister further pointed out that Sri Lankan fishermen are greatly affected by illegal fishing activities such as bottom trawling carried out by Indian fishermen and requested the FAO to explore the possibilities of providing fuel relief to secure the livelihood of local fishermen, until Sri Lanka comes out of the prevailing economic crisis.

The FAO Deputy Director General stated that their organization will consider all the requests made by the Minister, and their organization will provide the maximum aid and assistance to develop the fishing industry and the fishing community in the country.

The Director General thanked the Fisheries Minister and the officials of the Department of Fisheries who had worked hard to prepare the draft Bill.

Secretary to the Ministry of Fisheries Nayana Kumari Somarathne, senior officials of the Fisheries Ministry, and the representatives of FAO attended the meeting.

The post FAO assists Sri Lanka in drafting new Fisheries Bill appeared first on DailyNews.

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