PNG lacks maritime surveillance capacity

Papua New Guinea does not have the surveillance capacity to protect its international border.

Milne Bay Governor Titus Philemon in a Question without Notice to the Fisheries Minister Mao Zeming in this morning session of Parliament asked him if he was aware of illegal fishing in Milne Bay waters.

Philemon said there had been sighting of six illegal Asian fishing boats catching sea cucumbers in the past few weeks.  

There is currently a ban in place stopping the fishing of sea cucumbers in the country.

 “I am not aware of this illegal fishing activity,” Zeming said.

He added that the surveillance falls under the jurisdiction of the PNG Defence Force but they do not have the facilities.

“The National Government is discussing with donor agencies to support PNGDF,” Zeming said.

He added that PNG has an understanding with Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand to help protect its waters from illegal fishing.    

Parliament adjourned to 10am tomorrow. 

Caption: File picture. 

Charles Yapumi