Fisheries Development Fund to provide range of benefits | Daily News

Fisheries Development Fund to provide range of benefits

The Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Ministry plans to revive the fishermen’s pension schemes in keeping with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa's “Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour” "Saubhagya Dekma" National Policy Framework. It has been proposed to strengthen a Fisheries Development Fund and to introduce a sustainable pension scheme and provide a range of other benefits in line with similar fisheries promotion programmes that are already in operation in other countries.

It has been revealed that 993 sea water fisheries organisations and 450 freshwater fisheries societies with a total membership of around 106,553 members will benefit from the new schemes.

In consultation with Minister Douglas Devananda, a team consisting of Ministry Secretary Indhu Rathnayake, Fisheries Department and National Aquaculture Development Authority (NAQDA) Director General Prasanna Ginige and the Secretary of the National Fisheries Federation are working to establish the Fisheries Development Fund.

A Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Department spokesman told the Daily News that the main objective is the re-establishment of the fishermen’s pension scheme.

"Providing support to uplift the educational standards for the children of fishery families, enhancing nutrition level of fishery children, provision of livelihood empowerment support to the women folk to start self-employment ventures, initiating a subsidy scheme to provide fishing gear and strengthening the fishery villages concept etc. are among the other objectives," he further said.

The establishment of a well equipped Fishery Development Bank and providing banking facilities to fisheries youth is another proposal.