The Fishermen’s Bill has been accepted and sent to the committee on economic affairs for review.
The Bill, proposed by Ihavandhoo MP Mohamed Shifau on behalf of the government, was accepted with 72 votes at Tuesday’s sitting.
The Bill seeks to regulate the fishing industry to protect the ecosystem and promote sustainable fishing for the benefit future generations.
The Bill consists of laws to control fishing in the Maldivian region and stop illegal and unreported fishing. It also restricts fishing methods to pole and line fishing and hand-line fishing while harmful methods such as trawl-net fishing will be completely prohibited throughout the country.
It also requires the Fisheries Ministry, Maldives Transport Authority, police service, and coast guard to establish a surveillance system to monitor and control fishing.
The Bill will also require fishing vessels to acquire a license from the ministry, which will be given authority to issue a fine of no more than MVR 400,000 to the master, owner, and operator of any vessel that violates the licensing agreement.