“PNG is a small country but mighty in the Tuna world,” according to Papua New Guinea National Fisheries Authority managing director John Kasu.
Kasu while welcoming invited guests, participants, members of the diplomatic corp and public at the World Tuna Day celebrations in Sir John Guise Tuesday pointed out the involvement of PNG in making the tuna day a global event.
“The world tuna day is an important event to our region, today is a very special day for everyone to celebrate tuna.
“We acknowledge our parties to the Nauru agreement for this initiative and the vision in declaring May 2 the World Tuna Day, a day which has now gained world rectification as a global event as an annual celebration of tuna,” Kasu said.
He said parties to the Nauru agreement are PNG, Palau, Federate State of Micronesia, Tuvalu, Marshall Island, Nauru, Kiribati, and Solomon Islands are responsible for management and harvest of 50 percent of world’s earned tuna.
“So if you look at it we have a small country but mighty in the tuna world. PNG as a PNA member has since 2011 celebrated tuna day and this particular day was born in Alotau in 2007.”
“However today is extra special as for the first time we are celebrating with the world and this means a lot to us,” said Kasu.
“This day acknowledges that our tuna globally has great value and that we must work together to provoke a stronger awareness of greater global efforts in sustainable management in conservation of the tuna resource.”
PNG recognises the fisheries sector as an important asset that can grow the economy and tuna being the most important of all fisheries resources.
“It generates and contributes significantly to the revenue of the national economy of PNG.”
“The revenue generated from tuna NFA is able to carry out various developments that are taking place in the fisheries sector.”
“It provides food on the table, it provides jobs for people, generates income, and provides for the improvement of livelihood of PNG people,” Kasu said.
PNG celebrated World tuna Day with the theme ‘Sus-tuna-bility’ emphasising on sustainable practices that address the importance of tuna management and conservation.
“Tuna itself is a strategic asset of our country and this is reflected in our binding documents Vision 2050 and the Mid Term Development Goal, where the government is determined to get the best results possible from our tuna industry,” Kasu said.
He acknowledged the support and gave recognition to the central agencies and government departments who worked together to continue to support the sustainable management and development of fisheries in PNG.
“Tuna is obviously not only NFA responsibility but a national responsibility for all of us, together we can make a difference, despite the challenges of IEU I’m optimistic that PNG will continue to sustainably manage and develop tuna fisheries to greater heights,” he said.
He acknowledged PNG’s domestic tuna investment partners RD Tuna, South Seas Tuna and also bilateral development partners Japan, Korea, China and Taiwan.
Kasu encouraged his staff that working as a lead agency in managing and developing the fisheries industry is a significant responsibility and thanked all for continuing in promoting sustainable tuna practices with commitment and dedication for the people of PNG.