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Last Update:2014-12-19

The establishment and management of Fisheries Resources Conservation Areas

In recent years, there has been growing international awareness on global marine conservation. The concept of habitat protection is already an international trend, and establishment of marine proected areas (MPA) is no doubt along the international mainstream in promoting marine conservation. It has been widely recognized that MPA is an effective tool to prevent the loss of marine biodiversity, as well as to conserve and manage fisheries resources. Back from 1978, Taiwan has been focusing on the protection of important ecosystems or such biological species of specific fisheries resources, and establishing Fisheries Resources Conservation Areas by local governments, in accordance with Article 45 of the Fisheries Act, and providing restriction on catch size and fishing season in accordance with Article 44 of the Act. Currently, there are 26 localities of Fisheries Resources Conservation Areas in 10 coastal municipalities, counties (townships), with a total area of 6,500 hectares.

Taiwan’s fisheries resources conservation areas are all located within the fishing grounds where the livelihood of the local communities or fishing villages depend, and thus their establishment and the development of management mechanisms could not be done over night. Consultations with stakeholders were necessary to achieve consensus, and through repeated process of adaptative management models, including the formulation of management plan, delimitation of areas, scientific research and monitoring, review and communication, revision of the method of management, re-announcement, can they address the everchanging marine natural environment, in achieving good management results.

To-date the result of some of the fisheries resources conservation areas has proven to be promising. The Fisheries Agency anticipates local governments and local residents can pay particular attention to the importance of the fisheries resources conservation areas, and the model of adaptative management can be introduced into the policy of fisheries resources management, whereby providing strong driving forces to the conservation and management of Taiwan’s coastal and offshore fisheries resources, to achieve their sustainable use.

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