Pak chairs info-fish virtual seminar

By Staff Reporter
Wednesday – July 22, 2020
ISLAMABAD: The maritime affairs (MA) ministry secretary Rizwan Ahmed addressed the 33rd virtual meeting of the technical advisory board (TAB) of info-fish, Tuesday, wherein 10 countries, including Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Philippine, Bangladesh, Fiji, Malaysia, Maldives, Cambodia and Iran participated along with international observers.

According to an official statement, Pakistan has been awarded the chairmanship of info-fish for the incumbent year and MA secretary Ahmed is nominated to represent the country.

Speaking at the event, MA secretary Ahmed said that nature has blessed humanity with abundant resource of fish; however, nearly 90 percent of global fish stocks have either already been fully fished or overfished, as per the united nations (UN) food and agriculture organisation (FAO).

As the human population continues to grow exponentially, finding means to feed more mouths is one of the most important challenges faced around the globe.

The role of aquaculture in ensuring a consistent supply of aquatic species for human consumption cannot be understated.

Technical advances have generally led to more efficient and economical fishing operations, reduction of the physical labour required per unit of output and improved access to resources.

This signifies the need to develop more effective fisheries management frameworks, together with safer and more environment-friendly methods of production, for example, in developing selective fishing gear, development of value chain, reduction of pre and post-harvest facilities globally, development of value addition technology and in designing aquaculture systems that reduce their impact on external environments, he continued.

Lauding the success of info-fish MA secretary Ahmed remarked that as an intergovernmental organisation, info-fish has successfully completed 33 years of service to the fishery industries in Asia-Pacific and beyond.

The info-fish which began as an FAO regional project in 1981 has now become an organisation that has expanded its activities over the years covering fishing technology, handling and processing, aquaculture, environmental studies and a wide range of projects and consultancies.

By taking the opportunity, he requested info-fish to start its projects in Pakistan especially in the development and improvement of product value chain, development of shrimp aquaculture, skills and strategy to reduce post and pre harvesting losses, develop the value addition facility in Pakistan, development of channel/strong relationship with potential market of fish and fisheries products.

Concluding his address, MA secretary Ahmed said, “I assure all the member countries that info-fish will continue to support the member countries in the development of the fisheries sector” adding “I hope through this platform, the region will get maximum benefit, which will ultimately result in the development of the fisheries sector in the region.”