Bogor, W Java (Antara News) - Indonesias blue swimming crab stakeholders have approved an adaptive harvest control rule to ensure a sustainable fishery in the country, an Indonesian Blue Swimming Crab Processing Association (APRI) official said.

The harvest control rule has regulated the minimum harvest size, fishing gear restriction and habitat protection for nursery and spawning ground, APRI Executive Director Arie Prabawa said in his written statement made available to Antara here Saturday.

The minimum harvest size that the trade association, fishers, the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fishery, and the marine affairs and fishery offices had agreed was 10 centimeters while the escape vent size applied in fishing gear restriction using crab pot was 5,0 cm x 3,5 cm, he said.

The approval was recently made by the blue swimming crab stakeholders in a workshop and socialization of blue swimming crab harvest control rule in Kendari, Southeast Sulawesi Province, he said.

Prabawa said the harvest control rule was widely needed by fishery management strategy toward to sustainability.

"The Marine Stewardship Council, an international Eco labeling certification, will recognize the sustainable fishery through sustainable fishery stock, fishery habitat and fishery governance," he said.

In supporting an effective harvest control rule, the management controls were needed by making such efforts as forming fishery management body; conducting public awareness campaigns, community education, and monitoring and surveillance; pushing government support with budget and creating alternative livelihood for the fisheries, he said.

About the demand of blue swimming crab (Portunus pelagicus), Arie Prabawa said that it has been increasing significantly in the last two decades.

Quoting the 2013 statistical data, he said the fishery of blue swimming crabs value amounted to over 360 million US dollars or the third position after shrimp and tuna.

"This fishery is intensively sourced across Indonesia by thousands of fishers, and supported by thousands more women at

home industries as pickers. It has become the largest artisanal fishery involving most of fishery communities in Indonesia," he said.

In ensuring the fishery sustainability, APRI has launched a long term sustainability program, called Fishery Improvement Project (FIP). The FIP will be conducted by the Marine Stewardship Councils indicators and principles," he added.
(Tz.R013/f001 )

Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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