Government committed to reducing plastic waste: Ministry

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian government has committed to reducing plastic waste in its maritime areas, Expert Staff for Marine Ecology and Marine Resources of the Maritime Affairs and Fisheries minister, Aryo Hanggono stated.

"The government will reduce plastic waste up to 70 percent by 2025," he remarked here on Thursday.

Currently, he noted that a draft of the presidential regulation on the management of plastic waste at sea was being formulated to ensure coordination between the central and local governments.

He noted that banana peels took two weeks to decompose, while plastic bags took 10-20 years to decompose, and plastic bottles took hundreds of years to decompose.

In addition, he remarked that several studies also indicated that if no significant changes are brought about, the ratio of plastic to fish in the oceans is expected to reach three is to one by 2025, and the oceans will contain more plastic than fish by 2050.

Meanwhile, Executive Director of Kehati Foundation M. S. Sembiring pointed out that Indonesia has the largest biodiversity in the world.

Earlier, Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries Susi Pudjiastuti stated that the volume of marine biomass in the nations maritime areas had risen significantly after the implementation of the governments policy to ban the entry of foreign ships into Indonesian waters.

"The volume of biomass in the sea has risen up to 300 percent. The production of capture fisheries has increased, as foreign ships have been barred from entering Indonesian waters," she remarked here on Wednesday (Feb 28).

According to Pudjiastuti, following a moratorium on the issuance of licenses to former foreign fishing vessels, more than seven thousand ships have left the Indonesian state waters.

The minister expressed belief that the issuance of licenses to foreign vessels to buy fishing concessions in the territorial waters of Indonesia was a wrong decision.

Pudjiastuti noted that the eradication of illegal fishing practices held significance, as a form of law enforcement and state sovereignty, since it benefits the country economically.

Source: ANTARA News

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