16 Sep 2013

American Samoa looking to attract longliners back to port

4:48 am on 16 September 2013

The government-owned shipyard in American Samoa is focusing on attracting back to Pago Pago longliner fishing vessels now using other facilities in the Pacific region.

The Shipyard Service Authority board chairman, David Robinson, says the board and management continues to work on improving the shipyard, which has deteriorated over the last 30 years due to a lack of maintenance by previous operators.

He says only a small number of longliners are still based in Pago Pago, while the rest have gone to Fiji, the Cook Islands, and other parts of the Pacific due to operating costs in the terrtiory, the price of fish, and federal regulations to follow.

"So we need to have a pretty strong and aggressive marketing strategy to get these people to come back, and now we are on the improved, with our facilities, with our workmanship, I'm sure these people will start to come back again and we will see the longliner fleet start to increase in numbers again."

David Robinson says they are now working on an aggressive marketing strategy to bring back the longliners.