Tuna Industry in Turmoil08 May 2013
VIET NAM - Calls have been made to ban fishing with high pressure lamps and safeguard the economic viability of the sector in the light of rising costs and labour shortages.
Chairman of the Phu Yen Tuna Association, Nguyen Khac Tan has urged the industry to regulate catching methods by outlawing fishing with high pressure lamps.
Fishermen have been using the lamps to improve productability but they have also been reducing fish quality, making the fish unsuitable to export into lucrative markets.
In March, prices were around $3 per kilo, now they are $2.50.
Recent drops in prices are damaging what has so far been a good year for Tuna exports. Earning the Vietnam economy $154 million so far this year, value has risen 19 per cent - the greatest expansion in seafood exports.
Price reductions are damaging to fishermen. The Phu Yen and Binh Dinh provinces are reporting ships that currently can not go out to sea.
One ship owner in Khanh Hoa province has said the cost of a 30 day fishing tsip has risen to VND20 million. After costs this means a loss.
Consequently fishermen are quitting their jobs as they are only receiving low wages.
TheFishSite News Desk