The Annual Parties to Nauru Agreement (PNA) officials meeting got underway in Koror, Palau this week and Solomon Islands is being replresented by a small delegation led by the Director of Fisheries Mr Edward Honiwala.
Other members of the delegation are Deputy Director Offshore Division Mr Francis Tofuakalo, Chief Licensing Officer Ms Selina Lipa, Chief Compliance officer Mr Charles Tobasala and Ministry of Foreign Affairs representative Ms Gladys Luahiti.
This annual gathering of technical officers representing the eight-member countries is deemed important because that is where issues of common interest are discussed and decisions are made on the rich tuna resources.
The two-week’s meeting looked at a number of issues including Purse Seine, Longline Vessel Day Scheme (VDS), and the FSM arrangement.
For the VDS, the officials determined the allocation of fishing days to the parties. Annually a total of more than 40,000 fishing days under the Purse Seine VDS were divided between the parties. The parties will then fish their fishing days in accordance to their respective national laws.
The other main issue the PNA technical committee looked at was the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) Arrangement. With this arrangement, domestic fishing vessels from PNA Countries can fish in other PNA countries with the view to develop onshore processing.
The meeting started last week. The first week basically covered technical issues in preparations for the actual PNA meeting which started on Monday this week.
The Palau Fisheries Minister officially opened the 38th Annual gathering followed by the handing over of the chairmanship position held by Nauru to Palau.