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UDP says fishers in Corozal “ well bex” about Fisheries Regs

Also speaking on the issue today was the United Democratic Party. Fishers in the far north and part of the Belize District are bitterly complaining of the impact the regulations will have on their ability to catch lobsters. The regime change includes a new threshold on the size of the lobsters that fishers can catch. Senator Tony Herrera opined that not only does it zap much of the fishers’ earning power, but there has been a lack of consultations.

Tony Herrera, Senator: “There was a mass protest in Sarteneja Village by hundreds of fishermen. If there were consultations that would never have happened. But today, here we are fighting for these fishermen? Why? Because we have 3072 fishermen, licensed fishermen. We have a total of 842 sailing vessels that go to fishing. That does not include skiffs. Each vessel carries 10 to 15 persons per vessel, meaning 10 to 15 families. Now here is the deal guys. The Ministry of Fisheries is saying that they want or they have increased the size of lobster from 4 to 4.5, the conchs from 3 to 3.5. What this is simply doing to the fisherman is cutting deep into their pockets. We are talking about a 40% yield per year. And my colleagues, when it comes to commodities, fuel and everything skyrocketing if they are already being cut 40% off their yields and earnings, fuel is up 100% now, the groceries you have to take, so all of this taken into consideration they will kill the industry.”