Abu Dhabi: The UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE) recently organized an interaction with Fishermen’s Associations in the country.
The gathering which had Ms. Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, offered a platform for representatives of various Fishermen’s Associations to discuss critical challenges they face while operating in the industry, and explore the best ways to overcome them to preserve the fishing profession that is an integral part of the UAE’s heritage and history.
The Minister of Climate Change and Environment further added that, “To support these objectives, the ministry organizes periodic meetings with fishermen and their associations to identify key challenges and address them, in addition to raising their awareness about policies, laws, regulations, and the latest guidelines that enhance their participation in achieving the country’s goals.”
During the interaction, authorities reviewed the critical matters that were raised with the UAE Fishermen’s Cooperative Union, and the outcomes of field visits to the associations. Between November 2021 and February 2022, the Ministry had conducted 12 visits to the Fishermen’s Associations of Dubai, Sharjah, Hamriyah, Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Kalba, Fujairah, Khor Fakkan, Al Bidiyah, Dibba Al Fujairah, Dibba Al Hisn, and Umm Al Qaiwain.
Important discussions included topics such as the availability of introductory guides on fish spawning and breeding seasons, endangered species of marine life, decisions regarding the number of workers on fishing boats, and monitoring fishing violations.
The union put forward numerous discussion points including, revisiting the decision to transfer fishing licenses from person to person, amending the seasons for fishing with nets, studying the specific conditions for the profession of deputy boat master, and regulating fish imports during breeding seasons.
After deliberating with relevant authority, the MOCCAE gave initial approval to all fishermen to transfer fishing licenses.
The participants of the gathering also discussed the nature of the support and increasing the number of beneficiary fishermen, amending the requirements for the deputy boat master by adding another category to this position without the requirement for a certain degree of kinship, conducting nine regular meetings for fishermen per year, rehabilitating ports and marinas to enhance the safety and security of fishermen, and coordinating with the concerned authorities regarding pleasure boats.
Possibilities of organizing specialized training programs for certain categories of fishermen to provide them with technical expertise in aquaculture with the aim of enhancing food security were also discussed in the meeting.
Members who took part at the Interaction included;
- Nasir Sultan, Acting Assistant Under-Secretary for the Biodiversity and Marine Life Sector at MOCCAE
- Sulaiman Rashid, President of the UAE Fishermen’s Cooperative Union
- Jassim Hameed Al-Shar, Vice President of the UAE Fishermen’s Cooperative Union and Chairman of the Umm Al Qaiwain Cooperative Society for Fishermen
- Abdel Nasser Al Shamsi, Executive Director of the Dubai Fishermen Cooperative Society
- Ibrahim Al Abdooli, Vice President of the Sharjah Fishing Cooperative Society
- Saif bin Samha, President of the Hamriya Cooperative Society for Fishermen
- Mahmoud Al-Shara, President of the Fujairah Cooperative Society for Fishermen
- Ibrahim bin Yousef, President of the Kalba Cooperative Society for Fishermen and
- Representatives of the Ras Al Khaimah Cooperative Fishermen Association