Sunday, April 4, 2010

FEAC Stranglehold Slipping

On 17 March 2010, Marine and Coastal Management informed the South African fishing industry that it intends foregoing the requirement that right holders must apply for permission to change vessels - on an initial experimental basis and in certain sectors only. The affected sectors are south coast rock lobster, west coast rock lobster, hake long line and the hake trawl fisheries. Comment on this proposal is due by 30 April 2010.

Right holders in these fisheries who wish to change their fishing vessels - and provided that the alternative vessel is one that is already operational in the sector - need only inform MCM of the change of vessel and the right holder must submit a catching agreement if the right holder is not the owner of the alternative vessel.

The proposed policy change needs to be welcomed as a first step to resolving the numerous suffocating bureaucratic requirements imposed by MCM on the fishing industry, such as having to repeatedly submit the same documentation with each permit application and having to manually apply for any permit and licence.

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