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Amata appeals to Commerce Secretary Ross to lift fishing ban

Amata with Secretary Ross after their discussion.  [Courtesy photo]
Source: Media release, office of Congresswoman Aumua Amata

Washington, D.C. — Congresswoman Aumua Amata appealed to U.S. Department of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on Wednesday about the importance of removing the prohibition of American fisherman to fish in the waters of the National Marine Monuments.

 “My conversation with Secretary Ross was about the need for American fishermen to be able to fish in waters that have been designated as Marine Monuments. While I think we can all agree about the importance of the National Marine Monuments, how they protect our pristine waters and coral reefs; the lack of consultation with the local American Samoan community and the fishing industry at large, has created detrimental effects on our economy.

“We discussed creating a waiver for US flagged boats that would allow them to fish for tuna; but keep other environmental rules in place.

“These monuments take up 25% of our Exclusive Economic Zone waters in the Pacific. Our canneries need fish and out people need their jobs back, and the current rules governing the Marine Monuments are preventing either from happening,” Amata said.