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Jun 29, 2021

Finfish as Export Opportunity

Is Belize looking to tap into the potential of the global finfish market? That’s just a part of a bigger plan that the Ministry of Blue Economy and its partners have for finfish sector in Belize. While Belize was a primary exporter of some species of finfish over the last several years, there are renewed efforts to reinvigorate the economic opportunities with a management plan.  As a part of those efforts, the Belize Fisheries Department and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development and partners held a workshop called “Adaptive Multispecies Finfish Management.”  News Five stopped in to find out more.


Beverly Wade

Beverly Wade, Director, Ministry of Blue Economy

“We have decided to pay close attention to or finfish fishery. It is a resource which we don’t have as structured a management regime for as we do with some of our more established fishery, in particular lobster and conch, but it is a very important resource at the end of the day. But the Ministry of the Blue Economy and Fisheries Department are very much targeting and ensure that we have as a priority the regimes in place which would speak to sustainable use but also regimes which speaks to the creation of a fishery that can continue to contribute meaningfully to our national economy and also to livelihoods and the people in Belize.  And at the end of the day to understand how we can develop it both from a domestic market standpoint but also how we can now look at the resource and its potentials for exportation, foreign markets, that can now bring in much needed revenues into Belize.  Coming out of the fisheries department we have some very important resources that we don’t traditionally have a history of catching such as our deep slopes species and so it provides a good opportunity for us to create sustainable diversification in terms of commodities for the fishers and for us to put less pressure on our already heavily exploited near shore resources like our conch and lobster.   And so this workshop here today is in partnership with the Environmental Defense Fund who were hired to facilitate the process along with the Fisheries Department to come up with a finfish multispecies management plan for Belize. It is hopeful that this workshop would now validate the draft that has been developed and it would go to the Ministry for development and implementation.”


Today’s workshop was attending by fisher folk, N.G.O. partners, marine scientists, co-managers of marine parks and sites, officials from the Ministries of Blue Economy and Foreign Trade, as well as international experts.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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