The Jakarta Post
President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has ordered Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti to allow the use of trawlers until December, following protest from fishermen against a ministerial decree prohibiting trawlers.
Jokowi’s order marks the second postponement of the implementation of a regulation that was initially supposed to be enforced in January.
“Since Sunday, I have requested to meet with the President and seek his guidance on the issue. We will extend the use of trawlers until the end of 2017. This is done particularly for fishermen in Central Java,” said Susi after meeting with President Jokowi in Jakarta on Wednesday, as reported by kompas.com.
(Read also: Government extends trawl usage to June)
The ban on the use of trawlers, which is considered an unsustainable fishing method, is stipulated in Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry Regulation No. 2/2015.
Susi stressed that the distribution of fishing equipment to replace trawlers would continue, with priority given to fishermen whose boats were below 10 gross tons.
She said owners of larger ships had to buy their own new fishing equipment.
Up until April, the government has distributed more sustainable equipment to 603 fishermen and three cooperatives to replace trawlers.
“Fewer than 10 percent of Indonesian fishermen have received new fishing tools,” said Presidential Chief of Staff Teten Masduki in Jakarta on Wednesday, adding that it would be unfair to enforce the regulation while only a small number of people had received new equipment. (bbn)