IPOH: Trawler fishermen are being encouraged to give up their operations and move into aquaculture or deepsea fishing.
Perak Fisheries Department director Salehan Lamin said the move was to increase the catch for those fishing in waters between five and 12 nautical miles from the shore.
“There are too many trawler boats and fishermen are encouraged to leave the industry,” he said at a press conference here on Wednesday.
He said the Government was setting up an “exit programme” for trawler fishermen.
“If we can reduce the number of trawler fishermen by 20%, then they would be able to increase their catch,” he said, adding that there were 1,003 trawlers in Perak.
Salehan said statistics showed that the catch of trawler fishermen had dropped tremendously because of depleting fish resources.
“For example, they used to be able to catch 100kg of fish in an hour but now it has fallen to 50kg,” he said.
The programme, he said, would encourage affected fishermen to be trained in skills like aquaculture.
He said trawler fishermen were also encouraged to go into deepsea fishing, between 12 and 30 nautical mile from the shore.
Salehan also said the department had identified 1,700ha of land to rear cockles so that the state could export cockles to countries like China and Indonesia.