Fisheries Management Training for Central Sumba Fishermen


Posted : August 16, 2017

Central Sumba – The maritime and fisheries sectors in Central Sumba have the potential to develop into a sustainable business and serve as the region’s competitive advantage to boost the economy. One of the potential activities that could grow as a profitable business is capture fisheries.

Central Sumba is known as the habitat of pelagic fishes such as yellow-tailed tuna, skipjack tuna (cakalang) and tenggiri whereas its shallow waters are known for demersal fish such as garoupa, kakap and lobster. For many years, fisheries along the coast have sustained the basic economic and nutrition needs of the people, particularly in Lenang Village, Umbu Ratu Nggay Sub-District where 52% of its inhabitants work as fishermen.

However, the potential of the coastal fisheries in Central Sumba have not been rationally harvested. To date, is limited to household consumption and only a small proportion are sold to the bigger markets.

With support from MCA-Indonesia, the Blue Carbon Consortium is implementing a project entitled Knowledge Management on Low-Emission Development for Coastal Area of West and East Nusa Tenggara. The project aims to generate best practices and knowledge in managing coastal resources that adhere to low-emission development principles.

As part of the project, a training on ‘Increasing Fishermen’s Capacity in Fisheries Business Based on Ecosystem Protection’ was held on 12 June 2017. The participants were 30 fishermen from Lenang Village who have been practicing capture fisheries for their household consumption. The training was held to motivate them to be more professional and equip them with the skills in managing fisheries as an alternative livelihood to improve their welfare.

Arsyad Al Amin, one of the trainers, explained the keys to success in fisheries, namely technology, human resources and natural resources. Technology requires good quality boat and fishing tools, human resources aspect encompasses skills ranging from planning to preserving fish, but most important of all is the commitment to protect natural resources so that people can benefit from the sea for many generations to come.

“Environmentally-friendly fisheries must be ensured by avoiding the use of tools and practices that endanger the ecosystem. For instance, the use of explosives, toxin, and trawl. While these tools can increase the quantity of fish caught, it is harmful in the long run because they can destroy the corals, small fish and other sea biota,” said Arsyad Al Amin.

Business management is an integral part of the training. Participants were guided to develop a solid business plan and tactics to manage a profitable fisheries business. The trainers walked the participants through the steps to analyze business opportunity, such as understanding market demand, competition, calculating costs and resources needed to run a profitable business.

The training ended with a practical session on how to make an environmentally-friendly trap made from bamboo or bubu. A series of trainings have been prepared to equip fishermen in Central Sumba with the necessary skills to expand fisheries in the coastal area to improve the people’s welfare. (Intan Febriani/MCA-Indonesia)