By EDDIE OSIFELO
ABOUT 142 tonnes of fish stocks worth around $2.4 billion (USD$306 million) were caught in Solomon Islands Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
This was based on the Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) member states comparative development indicators from 2016-2018.
The country’s own fleet caught about 54 tonnes worth about $843.6 million (USD$106 million).
From the fish stock caught, 21,250 tonnes were processed onshore.
According to the report, about 3,009 people were employed in the tuna industry in the Solomon Islands.
Furthermore, the country exports tuna products worth $533.2 million (US$67 million).
Solomon Islands has received $334.2 million (US$42 million) from access and licence fees.
The report states that the Government received 10 percent as revenue from the fees.
Moreover, the annual catch if albacore, bigeye, skip jack and yellow fin from the national waters of FFA members averaged around 1.5 million metric tonnes over 2016-2018.
This was five percent lover than that averaged between 2013 and 2015.
This accounted for 57 percent of the Western and Central Pacific region (WCPO) tuna catch and 31 percent of the global tuna catch in 2018.
The average value of the annual catch in FFA waters between 2016 and 2018 was US$2.9 billion, 51 percent of the average value of WCPO annual catch of $5.7 billion.
The purse seine fishery contributed on average (2016-2018) just above 80 percent (US$2.4 billion) of the total average (2016-2018) catch value in the FFA EEZ.
The average (2016-2018) value of the skip jack catch was 60 percent of the total value of the harvest; yellowfin, bigeye and albacore contributed 29 percent, 8 percent and 4 percent respectively.
In the meantime, Solomon Islands joined the other 14 countries who are members of FFA to celebrate the World Tuna Day yesterday.
The Day is normally celebrated on 2nd May every year.
According Radio New Zealand, it was officially established by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) by adopting resolution 71/124, in December 2016.
It aims to draw attention to the importance of conservation management and sustainable fishing.