Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (KKP) announced that fisheries products of Indonesia's yellowfin tuna and skipjack tuna had been certified as meeting the Marine Stewardship Council’s (MSC’s) global standard for sustainable fisheries.

"Some 11 thousand tons of yellowfin and skipjack tuna have been certified through the collaboration between the Indonesian government and MSC for the US and European markets," Acting Director General of Capture Fisheries M. Zaini noted in a statement in Jakarta, Friday.

Zaini attributed this achievement of Indonesia to the efforts of the KKP and the Indonesian Pole and Line and Handline Fisheries Association (AP2HI) supported by the International Pole and Line Foundation (IPNLF).

Those parties had worked hard to ensure that tuna fisheries in Indonesia were managed sustainably.

Zaini highlighted that the certification obtained had involved 380 fishing vessels spread across Indonesia, from North Sulawesi and North Maluku to the Banda Sea, and East and West Flores.

The acting director general of capture fisheries explained that this was also an implementation of cooperation between the KKP and MSC that confirmed the joint commitment to bolster collaboration on sustainable fishing.

"The existence of this certification shows our commitment to sustainable tuna fishing in Indonesia to the world. As one of the largest tuna producers in the world, it is vital for us to support the process of obtaining this certification through a fishery improvement program. As a result, all fisheries sectors can grow sustainably while providing guaranteed livelihoods in future," Zaini stated.

Zaini explained that this certification is a way of determining that the fish catch meets international best practice for sustainable fishing, with good stock management.

This acquisition is a commitment that must be upheld for five years to maintain the certificate, related to stock and management.

"Of course, the support of all stakeholders (stakeholders) related to small-scale tuna fisheries is very important in encouraging the acceleration of the process towards sustainability," he remarked.

The assessment for this certification is conducted by an independent appraiser, SAI Global. This was then followed by a comprehensive assessment and stakeholder consultation by the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC), the agency responsible for 60 percent of the global tuna catch, as well as the central and provincial governments.

Director of the Asia-Pacific Marine Stewardship Council, Patrick Caleo, congratulated Indonesia on the achievements, especially AP2HI, which has worked hard to manage sustainable fisheries.

Caleo believes this certification can be maintained and also improved in future.

"This MSC ecolabel and certification program recognizes and rewards sustainable fishing practices and helps create a more sustainable seafood market to be globally recognized," he stated.
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Translator: M Razi, Azis Kurmala
Editor: Suharto
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