New Task Force Established to Monitor Use of Trawls and Seines in Bintan

Diana Mariska
Seine net, or locally known as cantrang. (Photo: Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries)
Seine net, or locally known as cantrang. (Photo: Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries) - Bintan local government has established a new task force that will monitor the use of trawl and seine nets within its territorial waters in a bid to protect traditional fishermen.

Acting Bintan regent Robby Kurniawan said following reports and complaints from local and traditional fishers about the use of trawl and seine nets that affects their catch, local government decided to create the task force.

“Traditional fishers complain about the two fishing gears that have been frequently used in Bintan waters recently,” Kurniawan said on Thursday, August 25, as reported by Antara.

According to him, the task force consists of personnel from different institutions, including Bintan marine and fisheries office, the Maritime Security Agency (Bakamla), director general of marine and fisheries resources surveillance (PSDKP) at the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, Bintan Police, the Navy, the prosecutor’s office, and other concerning agencies.

Bintan government also plans a meeting with Riau Islands governor Ansar Ahmad to inform the province leader about the current issue faced by local fishers.

According to local fishers in Bintan, there are dozens of fishing boats that use trawls and seines in less than 12 nautical miles from shore.

The use of the two gears caused catches by traditional fishers to drastically decline because both trawl and seine nets reach the sea floor and catch all biotas, including coral reefs.

“Meanwhile, our traditional fishers still use traditional equipment like bubu [trap cage], and it can’t compete with boats that use trawl and seine nets,” representative of Bintan traditional fishers Yadi said.

According to him, many local fishermen fail to fulfill their daily needs, including paying for children’s tuition fee, as a result of decreasing catch volume.

Since the use of trawls and seine nets became rife in Bintan in the last few months, fishermen oftentimes fail to get fish after spending days at sea.

Many of their bubu were also damaged by trawls and seines. It is worth noting that fishermen need to spend up to Rp 600,000 (US$41) to make one bubu.

“These days, bubu can only catch about one fish while, previously, it could catch dozens of fish per day,” Yadi revealed.

He lastly hoped that authorities can intensify monitoring and review regulation on the use of trawls and seines, especially the ones operating in less than 12 nautical miles from shore.

Tag # indonesian fishermen # indonesian traditional fishermen # ministry of marine affairs and fisheries # trawls in indonesia # seine net # tradiitional fishermen

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