Accra, Dec. 20, GNA - Mrs Gladys Asmah, Minister of Fisheries, on Tuesday said the Ministry would focus on increasing growth rate from five per cent per annum from 2005 to seven per cent in 2006 to promote and sustain fisheries resources management and to ensure increased production and output.
She said the Ministry had designed programmes from the policy objectives, which was aligned to the objectives of the Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy to focus on production and creation of gainful employment.
"These programmes have been proposed on a three year rolling basis and some of them have been commenced in the current 2005 budget year," she said.
Mrs Asmah said to this effect, a comprehensive fisheries development policy aimed at a more sustainable use of fisheries resources would be vigorously pursued next year to ensure that the country's fisheries resources were well and properly managed. She said funds would be sourced to provide regulatory services for improved natural resources management and its sustainable use. "We will continue to provide technical services to fish farmers, reduce pressure on fish stocks; strengthen the system and mechanism for managing fisheries resources, replenish/restock of the Volta Lake and reservoirs with fingerlings and intensify monitoring, control and surveillance activities to ensure responsible and legal fishing within the Marine and inland fishing systems."
Mrs Asmah said as part of the Ministry's capacity building project a monitoring Surveillance and Control Unit had been established to monitor the activities of vessels and trawlers and deal with other fisheries related issues.
She said a British company - Bluefinger was selected after series of consultation to design and deliver a vessel monitoring system for the Ministry at two service centres at the naval Headquarters at Burma Camp and the premises of the Fisheries Research Unit of the Fisheries Directorate at Tema.
She announced that Community-Based Fisheries Management Committees (CBFMCs) were established to formulate and enforce laws and management plans in their respective locations.
"District Assemblies were required to get these byelaws approved and gazetted and facilitate their enforcement," she said.