UAE Nationals should Captain Fishing Boats, Government Decides
No UAE fishing boats will be allowed to sail without a national captain, or the owner-captain who must also be a national, at the helm, with effect from May 1, 2001, the UAE Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF) has told the fishing community, according to WAM official news agency.
The agency quoted Saeed Mohammed Al Ragabani, the UAE Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, as saying that the decision came to safeguard national marine resources and protect the interests of traditional national fishermen.
The law takes effect from the first of next month, after the expiry of a grace period earlier granted to the fishermen to comply with the law.
According to WAM, citing official sources, the UAE has over 8,000 fishing boats and about 19,000 fishermen of different nationalities are engaged in the fishing industry. The fishermen catch around 115,000 tons of fish every year and between 15,000 and 30,000 tons of fish are exported annually – Albawaba.com