Malé, Maldives – President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih said Thursday evening that the Maldives Industrial Fisheries Company Ltd. (MIFCO) has cleared over MVR 39.5 million debt to fishermen during the incumbent administration.
The President said the debt was cleared, followed by the implementation of new policies to issue weekly payments to fishermen.
He made the statement while addressing the official function held in Gaafaru Island of Kaafu Atoll, to mark the 41st National Fishermen’s Day.
An additional 50-tonne ice plant was also established in Felivaru, while another 18 ice plants are being developed in 12 atolls. The completion of the projects would see production increase to 15,000 tonnes per month, which the President described as a significant improvement to the sector. The President also spoke about the importance of increasing the production of value-added products.
The quality of fish is a significant factor that determines pricing. President Solih said that maintaining quality is one of the areas the government is focusing on improving, which includes establishing a nationwide mechanism to provide ice to fishing vessels. While he inaugurated the newly developed ice plant on Gaafaru Island today, others had been completed on Maduvvari Island of Raa Atoll and Hoarafushi Island of Haa Alifu Atoll.
The President further said that fishermen would be able to reap the benefits early 2022 of the government’s efforts to expand the sector, including positive changes to pricing.