Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Minister Susi Pudjiastuti has said her decision to halt the use of cantrang – a kind of Danish seine net, a fishing instrument identified as unsustainable and not environmentally friendly – is final.
She said President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo agreed with her decision.
“It is final. Cantrang operations will stop in December,” Susi said while attending a hearing with House of Representatives Commission IV, which oversees maritime affairs, in Jakarta on Tuesday.
Susi is responding to recent protests lodged by fishermen in front of her office in Jakarta.Read also: Jokowi envisions aquaculture to boost fisheries industry
Cantrang used by fishing boats measuring less than 10 gross tons will be replaced with fishing equipment prepared by the government, while the owners of bigger boats will be allocated loans from state-owned lenders Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI) and Bank Tabungan Negara (BTN).
Cantrang was previously grouped under the category of instruments Susi banned in Ministerial Regulation No. 2/2015.
The regulation bans the use of all types of trawls and seine nets, which the ministry argues are destructive to coral reef and the seabed ecosystem in general.
The implementation of the ban was postponed after Jokowi intervened following protests from fishermen.
Susi stressed that her ministry would be firm against violators of the ban.
“They [fishermen] have new types of fishing equipment,” she stressed, adding that the fishermen who had replaced their cantrang had better catches with the new equipment. (bbn)