23 Feb 2004

Forum Fisheries Agency receives grant help with tuna sustainability

7:30 am on 23 February 2004

The push to protect the Pacific region's valuable tuna stocks has received another boost with a grant to the Forum Fisheries Agency, the FFA, of almost 700-thousand US dollars.

The FFA is receiving the money from the Global Environment Facility in New York, and will use it to fund Pacific countries' participation in the work of the new Tuna Commission to be set up later this year.

The economics and marketing manger of the FFA, Len Rodwell, says the establishment of the Commission will mean tuna stock, including depleted key stock such as Big Eye, should be safe from overfishing.

"The commission will be responsible for, firstly, controlling high seas fishing, which hasn't been done before and the commission will ultimately determine catch limit and allocations to be made among the parties to the convention."

Mr Rodwell says the 700-thousand dollar grant will be used for things like airfares for Pacific delegates to get to conferences and workshops on the Commission's work.