18 Feb 2013

American Samoa fishing vessel owners plead for Governor to help

2:31 pm on 18 February 2013

Fishing vessel owners in American Samoa have written to the Governor, Lolo Matalasi Moliga, to say that port charges, clearance requirements and a drop in the price of albacore are the reasons the territory's longliner fishing fleet is not out fishing.

In the letter, the Tautai o Samoa Fishing and Longline Association says the vessels are tied up in harbour due to a dramatic drop in fish prices that make it impossible for them to break even.

A owner, Carlos Sanchez, says there has been a lot of talk about the protection and survival of corals and sanctuaries, but there has been nothing about helping the fishing fleet survive.

He says the association has been trying to get the Government to listen to their concerns for months and vessel owners would like to see the Governor reduce or waive some of the port charges to help.