Taiwan officially joined the Southern Indian Ocean Fisheries Agreement on July 4, a move that Premier Su Tseng-chang said will benefit Taiwan's deep-sea fishery industry and safeguard the rights of Taiwan's fishermen to operate in the area. This marks the fifth regional fisheries management organization in which the nation has substantive participation. Taiwan will most assuredly continue making proactive and concrete contributions to the international community, the premier expressed confidently at a Cabinet meeting Thursday.
Taiwan's removal from the European Union's illegal fishing watch list in late June also affords greater protection for Taiwan's NT$40 billion (US$1.3 billion) fishing industry, as well as peripheral industries worth over NT$100 billion (US$3.2 billion). And, as a participating fishing entity in the Southern Indian Ocean Fisheries Agreement, Taiwan will be able to exercise decision-making authority alongside the agreement's nine contracting parties (including the EU, Japan and South Korea) to consider matters pertaining to the use and management of fishery resources in the southern Indian Ocean.
Premier Su gave high commendations to the Council of Agriculture, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other government agencies for the recent string of recognition bestowed on Taiwan by international fisheries organizations. He also expressed appreciation to the nation's fishery workers for their hard work, support and cooperation.