5 Aug 2004

Pacific leaders to talk on lapses in monitoring fish

6:21 am on 5 August 2004

Pacific Islands Forum officials, meeting in Samoa, say the failure of two of the body's member nations to implement the vessel monitoring system on fishing boats, will be raised by the leaders later this week.

The region, through the Forum Fishieries Agency, has been promoting VMS as a means of controlling and monitoring the nearly 1,000 vessels fishing the member countries' exclusive economic zones.

Isikeli Mataitoga, the CEO of Fiji's ministry of foreign affairs, and the chair of the officials committee meeting, says they have agreed that the Forum's decision to have a uniform monitoring system must be complied with.

But he says the two members falure to implement the new system may be simply because the software in their monitoring methods is not compatible with VMS.