United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Assistant Administrator Michael Schiffer had a discussion with local government officials of the municipality of Kalayaan during his visit to Puerto Princesa last week, on how illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing negatively impacts the lives and livelihoods of communities in the area.

During the meeting, the local government officials highlighted their collaborative efforts with local communities to address fisheries management issues and conserve marine resources.

Schiffer also engaged in a separate meeting with the civil society leaders who participated in the CSO (Civil Society Organization) summit organized by USAID in March 2023.

The summit focused on countering IUU fishing within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ), which includes addressing activities conducted by foreign-flagged vessels. 

Through the USAID Fish Right project, the U.S. government partners with the Philippine government, civil society organizations, and fishing communities to enhance sustainable fisheries management and mitigate threats to biodiversity. 

Western Command (WESCOM) chief VAdm Alberto Carlos earlier reported that FIlipino fishermen can now venture fishing into the West Philippine Sea free and safely due to their increased territorial patrol in the area.

According to him, the latest case of illegal fishing by other claimant countries were observed last year.

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