NIMA observed World Fisheries Day 2022

Joint efforts of Government and stakeholders are essential for transforming the fisheries sector to address depleting fish stocks and economic prosperity; Mr Tameezuddin Khero, Secretary of Livestock & Fisheries, presides over NIMA’s Webinar

The fisheries sector of Pakistan has a lot of potentials; however, it can be developed with the active support of all stakeholders, including Federal and Provincial Governments. Mr Tameezuddin Khero stated this, Secretary of Livestock and Fisheries, Sindh, speaking as the Chief Guest during a webinar organised by the National Institute of Maritime Affairs (NIMA) in connection with World Fisheries Day 22.

The webinar theme was “Protecting Marine Fisheries Resources of Pakistan – Way Forward towards Sustainable Fisheries”. He emphasised the need to empower the provincial fisheries domain as per the 18th Amendment.

He also suggested that all stakeholders, including the seafood processing industry, fishermen, harbour authorities, and government regulators, must align their efforts and work together to improve the situation.

Vice Admiral (Retd) Ahmed Saeed HI(M), Director General National Institute of Maritime Affairs (NIMA), in his opening remarks, welcomed the Chief Guest, speakers and the participant and highlighted NIMA’s efforts towards the development of the country’s maritime sector. He said the country needs to transform the fisheries sector for the country’s economic growth.

Earlier, as a moderator of the webinar, Director NIMA Karachi Cdre (Retd) Ali Abbas SI(M) highlighted that World Fisheries Day is celebrated every year to emphasise the importance of a healthy ocean, stocks assessment and ensuring workable practices for sustainability fisheries and also to show solidarity to all fishing community and the concerned stakeholders.

On occasion, the keynote speaker, Engineer Faisal Iftikhar, CEO of Deep Blue Seafoods, underlined the challenges faced by the fisheries sector. Mentioning the stock assessment report, he said that almost 80% of the fish stock had been depleted. However, he proposed to promote aquaculture practices as an alternative for the fisherman community to reduce the pressure on fish stock.

Mr M. Moazzam Khan, Technical Advisor WWF, Pakistan, mentioned the depletion of various fish and shellfish species. He highlighted the significance and need for protecting marine fisheries resources to promote sustainable fishing practices. He recommended that reducing post-harvest losses would ensure additional raw materials and fetch better prices.

The webinar also featured two renowned Iranian fisheries experts, Dr Farhad Kaymaram and Dr Tooraj Valinasaab, who presented their papers and shared intellectual insights. They highlighted the issue of Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported (IUU) fishing practices as the main cause of depleting the fish stock resources, especially Yellowfin Tuna and recommended that all the stakeholders work together to ensure compliance with conservation and management measures for sustainable fish stock. Dr Valinassab also stressed the need for Pakistan, Iran, Oman and other regional countries to work together.

In concluding remarks, the Chief Guest appreciated the efforts of NIMA for organising the webinar on such an important topic and providing a platform to deliberate on issues and challenges related to Fisheries. The event was attended by Government Officials, Marine Scientists, Consultants, representatives of Fishermen from Sindh and Balochistan and other core stakeholders of the Fisheries Sector.

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