26 Mar 2012

Cook Islands officials reveal huge tuna resources in the country's EEZ

3:39 pm on 26 March 2012

Revised estimates of the stocks of skipjack tuna in Cook Islands waters have revealed that possibly hundreds of millions of dollars worth of the fish could be available.

The Ministry for Marine Resources says that previous counts have underestimated the amount of skipjack tuna that live in the Cook Islands' exclusive economic zone.

New counts show that there are about 190 thousand tonnes of the species within Cook Islands waters.

Marine Resources says that if 60 percent or 110,000 tonnes of that stock is fished and sold at two US dollars a kilogramme, the fishery is worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

In a release the Ministry says skipjack tuna is a short lived species that matures at 10 months of age and can withstand high levels of fishing pressure.