Govt names 181 ports for fish exports

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The government through the Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Ministry (KKP) has selected 181 ports, which will be allowed to welcome foreign flagged cultured fish export ships.

"The government has assigned 181 cultured fish export ports in a number of regions across the country," Cultured Fish Director General of the KKP, Slamet Soebjakto, said in a written statement here on Thursday.

The director general said cultured fish exports in various regions have returned to normal. Exporters, for example, will be allowed to ship their exports from the Teluk Awang port in East Nusa Tenggara (NTT).

He also explained that the assignment of the 181 ports is based on an agreement between exporters and stakeholders in the fisheries sector.

In the future, foreign flagged ships, which transport cultured fish products can moor and carry out loading and unloading at the ports.

The appointment of the 181 ports is in line with the circular of the director general of cultured fish of the KKP dated February 1.

The director generals circular was issued to terminate the license extension system for foreign fish collecting ships that has contributed to poor cultured fish exports over the past three months.

"The step taken by the KPP is an effort to rearrange the presence of foreign ships in Indonesia," he said.

Moreover, he said, a number of foreign ships, such as those coming from Hong Kong often anchor near the cultured fish areas in Indonesia.

Such ship activities violate the cabotage principles as regulated under the shipping law. Therefore, the KKP is determined to rearrange the matter.

Earlier, the KKP wanted to synergize cultured fish farmers and exporters in order to increase their export performance of the cultured fish sector. "The cooperation between exporters and fish farmers, particularly grouper farmers, will continue to be encouraged and developed," noted Slamet Soebjakto.

He added that the export market problem could also be overcome if the partnership between fish farmers and fish exporters establishes good cooperation. (*)