By Nawara Fattahova
KUWAIT: The Public Authority for Agricultural Affairs and Fish Resources (PAAAFR) announced on Wednesday the mead fishing season started on June 1, according to ministry decree 245/2022. The season continues till the end of November. Since 2017, the mead fishing season always starts on July 1, but this year it started earlier.
Fishing was allowed earlier after PAAAFR studied the issue and considered this timing suitable as it coincides with the ban on fishing zubeidi (pomfret), to ensure enough supplies of local fish for consumers. The fishing ban during the rest of the year was set to protect mead from overfishing. PAAAFR is protecting Kuwait territorial waters from fishing violators, and its inspectors are monitoring the sea every day. Those who violate the law will be fined between KD 50 and KD 500.
A PAAAFR official explained the Environment Public Authority (EPA) is also involved in observing some marine areas. “Kuwait Bay (Jon Al Kuwait) is protected by EPA, and fishing there is banned in general for all kinds of fish. Exemptions were given for fishing in the bay to amateur fishermen. They should book an appointment and pay a fee,” he told Kuwait Times.
He also explained how inspectors recognize amateur fishermen from professional or commercial ones. “Fishermen can only fish with line and hook. Using other fishing tools such as nets, traps, etc is forbidden in Kuwait Bay. Fishing in Kuwait Bay is considered an environmental crime and penalties are stricter than for violating the fishing ban in other areas. Violators are penalized by inspectors, and their case will be transferred to the general prosecutor to be investigated,” added the official.