29 Dec 2014

World Bank approves fisheries grant

7:02 am on 29 December 2014

The World Bank has approved a $US33 million dollar grant for a programme to strengthen fisheries management in select Pacific countries.

The Pacific Islands Regional Oceanscape Programme will provide funding to the Federated States of Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu, as well as to the Forum Fisheries Agency.

Fish being sold at a Solomon Islands food market.

Fish being sold at a Solomon Islands food market. Photo: RNZ

A senior natural resources manager at the World Bank, John Virdin, says the money will help countries strengthen monitoring and protection efforts.

"Improving the monitoring of the fish that's caught in their water, improving the capacity to improve surveillance of fishing activities and try to ensure against illegal fishing, training all of the teams and staff there and all of the things needed to safeguard the health of the resources in their waters."

John Virdin says the Oceanscape Programme is the first time the World Bank has supported fisheries in the region, and the programme is open for all Pacific countries to join.