Back on my favourite working place in the Pacific, Noro in the western province of the Solomons.
Solomon Islands tuna accounts for around 7 percent of the total Western and Central Pacific Ocean catch – more than 150,000 tonnes – with an estimated value of US$180 million. However, the bulk of the catch is taken by foreign fishing vessels under licensing agreements and processed elsewhere. Access fees paid to Solomon Islands represent only around 5 % of the landed (not retail) value of the catch.
I always believed that the set up here in Noro represents what fishing industry should be in the Pacific. Two operations, NFD (fishing pole&line - small purse seine fleet) and SolTuna loining - canning employing over 1600 people (99% locals), majority owned by the Solomon Islands Retirement Fund, management is positive and really into it people.
Working here under a AusAID-funded initiative training fisheries officers, skippers and processors on the inner workings of Catch Certification Schemes.