Establish the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (DFAR)

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We, the representatives of the Philippine fishing industry, including commercial and municipal capture fisheries, aquaculture, post-harvest, the academe, consumer sector, business sector and the civil society organizations,  express our support to the establishment of Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (DFAR).

The fisheries sector is confronted with critical challenges that will have dire impacts to our food security, livelihood and subsistence of millions of Filipinos. It is timely and relevant that we establish the DFAR now. 

Why We Need A Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (DFAR): 

1. To solely focus on the need to promote, develop and manage the utilization of our fisheries and aquatic resources.

2. To address the progressive decline in fish population and catch which the Philippine fisheries industry has been facing over the last decade.

3. To prioritize research and development (R&D) and capacity enhancement for fisherfolk to address food security, economic sustainability and global competitiveness of the fisheries sector.

4. To establish appropriate funding and technical staff support to undertake and implement comprehensive programs and policies. For an agency exercising supervision over fisheries and aquatic resources to be truly efficient, it must have the necessary funding and staffing.

5.  For a lead agency to harmonize the implementation of fisheries policies and better coordination among the public and private stakeholders.

6. A Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources can provide institutional support to maximize the potential of the blue economy and to implement the Comprehensive National Fisheries Industry Development Plan (2016-2020) and the Comprehensive Post Harvest, Marketing and Ancillary Industries Plan (2018-2022).

We call on President Rodrigo Duterte, the Senate of the Philippines, and the House of Representatives to support the establishment of DFAR. This is for the benefit of not only the 1.9 million registered fisherfolk who directly depend on the sea for livelihood and subsistence bt also for the next generation to come.