President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. on Saturday clarified that he would not impose a fishing ban on breeding sites, saying he was merely requesting fisherfolk to avoid areas where there is natural propagation.
Mr. Marcos said this in an interview after the distribution of rice to 2,000 beneficiaries in Iriga City, Camarines Sur.
“I did not explain it well. I was not talking about a fishing ban.
What I’m saying is, where the breeding areas of the fish are, let us not fish there so that the fish could multiply. But there is no fishing ban,” he said.
Mr. Marcos said he would not impose a ban but merely wants to restrict fishing in breeding grounds to increase the fish population.
“People could not make a living with a ban. But we have to increase the fish population. I was talking to the fishermen earlier. They said their catch has really decreased,” he said.
In an interview during a rice distribution activity in Zamboanga City on Tuesday, Mr. Marcos said he is considering imposing several restrictions to secure the country’s fish supply.
The President emphasized the need to address overfishing and boost the country’s aquaculture and lamented the sector’s challenges, including low catch, because of the destruction of fish breeding areas.
He assured the government is implementing programs to put up more cold storage facilities to prevent spoilage, as he noted that up to 30 percent of fish catch is degraded or damaged.
The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources earlier said it aims to boost the country’s fisheries sector to contribute to economic growth.