Pacific puts limits on tuna boat numbers

Pacific puts limits on tuna boat numbers

Pacific puts limits on tuna boat numbers

Posted 4 December 2007, 3:23 AEST

A group of Pacific Island nations have begun limiting the number of tuna boats allowed in their national waters.

The Vessel Day Scheme came into affect on December, as a way for island nations to conserve the valuable tuna fisheries of the Pacific.

Our Pacific correspondent Campbell Cooney says since Saturday, the Vessel day scheme has been in place in the combined exclusive economic zones of Palau, Federated States of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Nauru, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu.

The scheme limits the number of tuna boats to be allowed in the zones at any one time, as well as setting a maximum amount of fish each boat can harvest.

The limits come into affect as delegates from 40 countries meet in Guam this week to assess conservation measures to ensure the future of tuna stocks in the Western and Central Pacific.

The region's estimated to supply around half the world's markets for the fish, with the catch valued at around two billion US dollars annually.

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