Group Seeks Monitoring Of Maritime Domain To Curb Illegal Fishing

Group Seeks Monitoring Of Maritime Domain To Curb Illegal Fishing

Nigerian Association of Master Mariners (NAMM) has advised that the extension of the nation’s maritime domain by an additional 20 Nautical Miles (NM) should strengthen the monitoring of fishes, which are poached due to illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing.

The United Nations recently approved the extension of Nigeria’s continental shelf from 200 to 220 NM, which allows it to redraw the territorial map of its sovereignty in the Gulf of Guinea.

This grants Nigeria the right to exploit the abundant carbon and marine resources present in the area.

The President of NAMM, Captain Tajudeen Alao, while giving the expectations of the association for 2024, said with the maritime domain extension at sea, the country could probe further and put money into research.

He said the economic gain from this addition will be enormous in terms of hydrocarbon, crude oil and marine diversity, which would be covered by the blue economy ministry.

Alao said there is hope that the country can get up to 350NM as the submission was for 150NM extra.

He said the nation’s Navy Falcon Eye, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) security architecture known as the C4i and the Nigerian Ports Authority’s (NPA) Ci3 will do the monitoring.

Alao noted that the Suppression of Privacy and other Maritime Offences (SPOMO) Act is also meant to monitor the area.

He noted that the data for captured fish in the last two years had been on the increase, from 500,000 metric tonnes to 800,000 metric tonnes on the Nigerian coast.

According to him, this is because the Nigerian Institute of Marine and Research (NIOMR) oversees things now.

He called for more active participation of industry stakeholders to reduce capital flight in the marine industry.

The master mariner said the negative impact capital flight had on the country was enormous, hence the need to curb it.

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