The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in 2020 has collected around P40 million in penalties from what it describes as “illegal, unreported and unregulated” fishing-related cases across the country.
USec. Eduardo Gongona of the fisheries bureau said in a virtual media briefing on Thursday that illegal fishing activities are posing threats to the fishing industry of the country, wherein losses are reaching up to billions due to IUU fishing.
“Billions are lost to illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing. And if we truly commit to reducing unsustainable and destructive fishing practices as what the government through the Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Fisheries is doing now, our fisherfolk will truly benefit from this effort,” he said.
The agency’s adjudication committee has recorded 684 resolved cases out of 793 filed illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing-related cases and is aiming to further widen its patrol and monitoring operations to surpass this.
Meanwhile, BFAR also reported the apprehension of nine commercial fishing vessels operating using a destructive fishing gear, hulbot-hulbot or Danish seine, off the waters of Mauban, Quezon on December 31, 2020.
The vessels were impounded in Alabat, Quezon after the completion of the apprehension process on January 6, which was also affected by unfavorable weather conditions in the area.