Sat, 21 Jun 2003

Fewer trawlers poaching in RI waters

SURABAYA, East Java : The number of foreign trawlers poaching in Indonesia's waters has sharply declined from about 7,000 three years ago to approximately 1,000 this year, Minister of Fisheries and Maritime Affairs Rokhmin Dahuri said on Friday.

"We have successfully reduced the number of trawlers poaching in our waters," he said during a discussion on fisheries organized by the Nahdlatul Ulama (NU)'s youth wings, IPNU and IPPNU.

The minister also said the country's fisheries sector has earned about Rp 300 billion (US$36.6 million) since the establishment of the ministry two years ago.

He urged followers of the NU, the country's largest Islamic organization with more than 30 million members, to do what they could to assist the fisheries sector.

"About 1.5 million of four million fishermen nationwide work in Banten, Jakarta, Rembang in Central Java and Tuban in East Java," Rokhmin noted. -- Antara