Press Release
December 4, 2017

Villar calls support for fisheries and aquaculture

Following the 4.27 percent decline in output of the fisheries sector during the last third quarter, Senator Cynthia A. Villar exhorted all stakeholders in the fisheries and aquaculture sector to do their share to cope up with all the challenges confronting the industry.

Despite the reduction, Villar, chair of the Senate agriculture and food committee, said the prospects for the fisheries and aquaculture sector are still good.

She said the sub sector grossed PhP56.7 billion at current prices or 3.05 percent higher than last year's record. The entire fishery sector contributed 17.40 percent to the total agricultural production during the quarter.

But still, she underscored the need to keep strengthening our competitive advantages. She said "we cannot be complacent because there are numerous challenges that we have to contend with also."

She said there are still a lot of things that we have to address in the fisheries sector.

"Your inputs are very important because you are the ones out there who are directly engaged and involved in the industry, Villar told the participants in the event sponsored by the Department of Agriculture- Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.

During the forum on the current state of the country's fisheries and aquaculture, Villar urged everyone to help things better by implementing timely policies, responsive legislations and realistic plans.

Villar assured to continue supporting and upholding the welfare of fisherfolks, fishing communities, and fisheries.

"The fisheries sector is very important to an agricultural and archipelagic country such as ours. It has a direct and indirect impact on all of us Filipinos, too."

The senator also said she considers Republic Act R.A. 10654 (Act to Prevent, Deter and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing, Amending R.A. 8550) that amended the 18-year-old Fisheries Code as one of our legislative achievements or milestones.

Villar said the legislation, which she principally authored and sponsored has brought about a lot of positive results and developments including the lifting of the yellow tag imposed by the European Union (EU).

She stressed that if the ban was not immediately addressed, this would cause a ban on the exportation of fish products to one of the country's largest markets.

As principal sponsor of the measure, Villar said one of her main goals also is to balance the need to increase marine life production and the need to protect the sustainability and biodiversity of our oceans.

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