28 Oct 2003

Regulations are likely to restrict the collection of ornamental fish in Vanuatu

6:57 pm on 28 October 2003

Voluntary restrictions are to be imposed on the collection of ornamental fish from Vanauatu.

Dive and snorkelling operators on Efate Island had expressed concern over the number of fish being removed from reefs for the aquarium business.

After a meeting of interested parties, it's likely the Ministry of Fisheries will recommend regulations.

But some action is already being put in place as the President of the Scuba Association and tourism operator, Owen Drew explains:

"In the interim period, the fish exporters, and the rest of the concerned industry people, have agreed that there's going to be a restriction on the level of exports for the next two months."

Scuba Association President , Owen Drew

The General Manager of the main exporting company, Sustainable Reef Supplies, Larry Sharon says his company has agreed to stay away from dive sites:

I think the tourism industry and the aquarium industry can manage to co-exist, I mean they manage to do it everywhere else.

The General Manager of Sustainable Reef Supplies, Larry Sharon