Centre urged to protect interests of fisherfolk

February 05, 2016 12:00 am | Updated 05:51 am IST

An international conference on Sustainable Blue Economy got under way in Kochi on Thursday with a call to the Union government to protect the interests of the fishing community while framing a new national maritime fisheries policy.

Minister for fisheries K. Babu, who inaugurated the conference, said: “The Union government should be ready to protect the interests of the fisher folk while framing the National Fishing Policy. We have to bear in mind that fisher folk are the key stakeholders.”

The Minister underlined the challenges faced by the fishing and coastal communities and wished that the conference’s outcome would go a long to address these issues.

The three-day conference is being organised by the Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies in collaboration with the Nansen Environmental Research Centre (India).

The theme of the conference is ‘Towards a Sustainable Blue Economy: Production, Strategies and Policies.’

Vice-Chancellor of Kufos B. Madhusoodhana Kurup, who presided over the inaugural function, said the blue economy had emerged as a term referring to a healthy ocean, supporting higher productivity. The blue economy, he said, was envisaged as the integration of the ocean economy development with the principles of inclusion, environmental sustainability and innovative and dynamic business model.

Ola Johannessen, chairman of Nansen Scientific Society, Norway University of Bergen, was among the speakers at the inaugural session. The The speakers at Friday’s sessions include Ricardo Haroun, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Telde, Spain.

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