President Joko Widodo, left, with Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull at the IORA Summit in Jakarta on Tuesday (07/03). (Antara Photo/Wahyu Putro A.)

Jokowi Highlights Commitment to Eradicate Illegal Fishing in IORA Summit

BY :EKO PRASETYO & NOVY LUMANAUW

MARCH 07, 2017

Jakarta. President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo highlighted his commitment to eradicate illegal fishing in Indonesian waters as part of an effort to preserve the country's maritime ecosystem and environment during the Indian Ocean Rim Association, or IORA, Summit in Jakarta on Tuesday (07/03).

Speaking at the opening of the Leaders’ Summit, Jokowi said "the environment is in need of urgent attention. This is why since 2014 the [Indonesian] government has acted firmly against illegal fishing."

In 2016, Indonesia sank more than 236 fishing boats which were caught fishing illegally in Indonesian waters. The government also plans to sink 90 other foreign-owned ships that have looted fish in Indonesian seas in the near future.

Jokowi also addressed the issue of forest and peatland fires that always come back every year in Indonesia.

"The government has also taken concrete measures to prevent forest and peatland fires, which pollute the air with smoke and smog every year," Jokowi said.

Jokowi also urged IORA member states to promote environmental preservation to the public.

IORA is expected to produce four agreements from the Leaders' Summit on Tuesday, which will outline future programs aimed at creating a peaceful, stable and prosperous Indian Ocean region.

The summit has focused on the issues of maritime security and safety, trade and investment, fishery management, disaster risk management, academic partnership as well as tourism and cultural cooperation.

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