LKIM tells fishermen’s associations to produce downstream products

SANTUBONG, Oct 26: The Fisheries Development Authority of Malaysia (LKIM) proposes that fishermen’s associations in each state take advantage of sea products by working on aquaculture activities and produce downstream products to get out of the cocoon of poverty.

LKIM chairman Muhammad Faiz Fadzil said LKIM is formulating strategic plans to ensure that such activities are controlled by all 91 fishermen’s associations in Malaysia.

“For example, the fishermen’s association in Buntal was the first to have a Solar Dryer Dome (SSD) to dry belacan as a downstream product here and it is able to dry belacan in three days compared to seven days using the conventional method.

“There are also other places working with the same project, but that is done individually and is not under the association, so LKIM wants all fishermen’s associations to do economic project like this,” he said after attending the LKIM MADANI programme here Wednesday.

He said the SSD project involved the collaboration of the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security and has the potential to be expanded to other states.

Meanwhile, he said based on feedback from the fishermen, LKIM found the issue of Zone A fishing licences (five nautical miles from shore) to be the main problem expressed by the community.

He said to resolve the issue, LKIM has held discussions with the Department of Fisheries (DoF), which is responsible for the approval of fishing licences.

“Since the last five years, 8,000 Zone A fishing licences have been issued, which is quite a significant number for fishermen across the country,” he said.