The change in regulating and restricting on the use of fishing methods is expected to boost fishermen’s incomes through more profitable catches and high quality products, a government official has said.
The government introduced the ban on small fishing nets last year to allow fish to grow and increase national fish production.
“Restriction and regulation of fishing methods will lead to larger catches of fish with a higher market value,” Dr. Theogene Rutagwenda, the Director General of Rwanda Animal Resource Development Authority (RARDA) said.
He added that using proper methods of fishing will give the fish a chance to grow bigger and bear many offspring.
“The use of unauthorized fishing nets has threatened fish production, but we are on track to end purge these harmful activities, we see that the ban is a direct benefit to the fishermen,” he added.
Parallel efforts to develop the fishing industry include the newly established law on fishing and fisheries (aquatic law) that will convert livestock sub-sector strategy into a viable sector by supervising and regulating fish farming.
The law is expected to play a crucial role in the transformation of the sector.
The one that has been in use became absolute in 1937 as it included some articles that could not be applied.
Rwanda wants to be self sufficient in fish production. Government imported fingerlings (small fish) and restocked 17 inland lakes.
“The fishing business is now organised and strong measures are in force to deter whoever does any crime affecting production from these waters,” he said.
Recently, government through the Ministry of Agriculture handed over 25 boats worth Rwf 346 m illion to Rwanda National Police (RNP) and Rwanda Defense Forces (RDF) to be used by marines of the two institutions to fight crimes that affect food production around the lakes.