Fisherfolk group to defy ban on catching galunggong
Ding Cervantes (The Philippine Star) - November 8, 2015 - 9:00am

CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga, Philippines – The Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) said that small fishermen would defy the three-month, government-imposed ban on catching galunggong (roundscad) in Northern Palawan.

The Philippines now exports no less than $808 million worth of marine products annually, the fisherfolk group noted yesterday.

Pamalakaya vice chairman Salvador France said that while the export of marine products apparently resulted in overfishing, the importation of fish reached 900 million tons yearly and derailed the long-term sustainability of fish and aquatic production.

“The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources ((BFAR) has imposed a three-month closed season for galunggong in Northern Palawan from Nov. 15 to Feb. 15, but fishers will defy this,” he said.

Pamalakaya said the incessant drive to increase exports of marine products to the top countries such as the US, Japan and the European Union has depleted the fish stocks in Philippine seas.

The country exports no less than $808 million worth of marine products to these three foreign destinations.

At the same time, the group lamented the country’s dependence on importation rendered the domestic market and local prices unstable, thus affecting the livelihood of small fisherfolk.

“Fishing ban is not the solution to conserve the marine ecosystem. It just worsens the exploitation of the sea,” France.

France said that due to the fishing ban fisherfolk were forced to venture farther out to sea even in turbulent weather, putting their lives in danger.

Commercial fishing vessels usually go on panic fishing before the effectivity of the ban and exploit the seas.

ACIRC BUREAU OF FISHERIES AND AQUATIC RESOURCES FEB JAPAN AND THE EUROPEAN UNION KILUSANG MAMAMALAKAYA MARINE NORTHERN PALAWAN PAMALAKAYA PAMBANSANG LAKAS PILIPINAS SALVADOR FRANCE
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