Illegal fishing to be closely monitored – Devananda

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Fisheries Minister Douglas Devananda yesterday (25) instructed officials of the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources and other entities coming under the purview of the Fisheries Ministry to start a programme with the Navy to stop illegal fishery activities in Sri Lankan seas.

Minister Devananda met Ministry Secretary, Indu Ratnayake and other officials to discuss available mechanisms and possibilities to stop illegal fishing activities taking place in Sri Lankan waters off the Northern coast and other areas and the need to get the support of the Sri Lankan Navy in this connection.

Devananda said the number of fishermen engaging in illegal fisheries in Sri Lankan waters were on the rise.

Meanwhile, he said, the distribution of kerosene to fishermen was currently underway island wide. Devananda instructed officials to give him a detailed report regarding the distribution.

The Fisheries Minister said attention was also focused on sea cucumber farming and the possibility of promoting it.

“Investors from China and India were enthusiastically waiting to invest in this industry. I have instructed the relevant officials to provide the required infrastructure facilities to start this industry. The sea cucumber breeding centre must be equipped with sophisticated facilities to enable investors who could  make a huge income and raise the living conditions of those employed in this venture”, Devananda added.

 By Naalir Jamaldeen