Fishing rights application deadline extended

WALVIS BAY

27 July 2018 | Ministries

Leandrea Louw

The deadline for applications for fishing rights has been extended from 31 July to 31 August 2018.

The minister of fisheries and marine resources, Bernard Esau, explained that the application criteria requiring Pty companies has only been “relaxed and not repealed”.

“Close corporations (CC) and the legal entities are now allowed to apply for fishing rights. However, where non-Pty applicants are shortlisted for consideration, they will be notified and given 60 days to convert to Pty before a fishing right is issued.

“We have taken note of the public support for the need to protect vulnerable shareholders through the gazetted Pty approach. We have noted that there is a rush by applicants to create beneficiation groups across the country, which may be causing some confusion. In this regard, I wish to clarify that, in terms of the socioeconomic criteria published in the Government Notice 92 of 24 May 2018, I am keen to consider broad-base beneficiation through recognised broad-base entities,” said Esau.

At the launch of the new Efuta product range and reflagging of the MVF Iona of Etosha Fishing, Walvis Bay on Wednesday, Esau furthermore said that he is aware that many people want fishing rights.

“I would like to remind all that a fishing right is a right to go fishing, to go into the ocean and do fishing. In terms of our laws, a fishing right is not a right to sell quota, or get rich quick. It is about training, capacity building, it is an issue of participation in the fishing sector.

“If you do not want to go fishing, there is no need to apply for a fishing right. The time has come that people need to understand, when government says we want to empower you, we want to empower you with the technical know-how and necessary skills of that industry. You cannot be a shebeen owner and apply for a fishing right and then sell that fishing right to someone else. I can assure that these issues will be taken into consideration when it comes to the applications.”

“After 28 years of independence, our fishing industry, both old and new must transform to be truly inclusive. Economic prosperity that is not shared cannot be sustainable. The future in our fisheries belongs to those who invest, who add value, create jobs, and who are economically inclusive. Let us work together,” said Esau.

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