Fishery Management

Federated States of Micronesia

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The Federated States of Micronesia consists of over 600 islands in four states (Yap, Chuuk, Kosrae, and Pohnpei) between 1º and 10º N latitude and 138º to 163º E longitude. The mid-year 2002 population estimate for the Federated States of Micronesia was 110,700 people (SPC 2003).



Exclusive economic zoneEdit

The Federated States of Micronesia has an exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of around 2,780,000 km2, while only having a land area of around 701 km2. The Federated States of Micronesia has around 50 per cent of its EEZ bordering on international waters, with the remaining EEZ bordering four Pacific Island nations, Papua New Guinea to the south, the Republic of Palau to the west, Guam to the north, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands to the east.

Development status of fisheries (2004) Edit

(The original of this text was transferred, with the permission of SPC, from the original SPC technical report by Lindsay Chapman in 2004, and was compiled from interviews with island fishery managers and fishers. However, please feel free to make corrections to this Wikicity text if you have more accurate or more up-to-date information)


The development and management of the marine resources within the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) falls under the jurisdiction of the National Oceanic Resources Management Authority. The Authority works under Title 24 — Fisheries Act 2002, which establishes a comprehensive framework for fisheries management by the Authority from 12 to 200 n m in the FSM EEZ. The Marine Resources Department in each State has jurisdiction over the territorial sea, from high water mark to 12 n m.

The following sections summarise the current status with background information on domestic development in the nearshore fisheries, in a range of areas. The main focus is on developments in the tuna fishery, both public and private sector, as this is where most effort has and is being directed. The tables provide a snapshot based on the information available at the time.

Deepwater snapper fishing Edit

Current status

Ad hoc fishery mainly for subsistence and artisanal fishermen with catches sold locally but not exported.


Rural and urban fishing centres Edit

Current status

Some ice plants in rural areas with 3 in Chuuk, 2 in Yap and 1 in Pohnpei. National Fisheries Corporation in Pohnpei with transhipment points in Chuuk (CFTI) and Yap (YFTI), all with ice, freezer, and processing facilities.

Pohnpei Fisheries Corporation involved in loining and steaking tuna for export markets.

Several other private sector processing or packing facilities for tuna.


Boatbuilding (public and private sector) Edit

Current status

One company in Chuuk building fibreglass boats from 6 to 9 m in length. Kosrae and Yap have slipways for doing repairs and maintenance work, mainly on steel and wood vessels.

Several small repair shops for fibreglass boats plus some people do repairs in their back yard.


FAD programmes and or deployments Edit

Current status

There are no government FADs or moored FADs in the waters of the FSM at present.

Two states have materials for FADs.


Public sector development (small-scale tuna fishing) Edit

Current status

Training provided through the maritime and fisheries colleges in FSM.

Yap fishing Authority has several small-scale vessels trolling and deep-water snapper fishing.


Private sector development (small-scale tuna fishing) Edit

Current Status

Subsistence and artisanal trolling outside the reef for tunas and other pelagics is conducted by many private sector operators on a part time basis, with 50 to 100 boats at both Pohnpei and Chuuk, and 25 to 50 boats at both Yap and Kosrae.


Public sector tuna fishing companies Edit

Current status

Micronesian Longline Fishing Company has 12 longliners with foreign crew. State fishing authorities have 6 or 7 longliners between them.

NFC and affiliated companies in the states have around 10 tuna longline vessels between them.

Other government companies have around 6 to 8 tuna longliners and 3 purse seine vessels.


Private sector development (medium-scale tuna fishing) Edit

Current status

MFV has 10 to 12 tuna longline vessels.

PFS has 6 tuna longline vessels, but also acts as an agent for 27 charter boats.

Two other companies have vessels under charter or joint venture arrangements.


Joint ventures tuna fishing operations Edit

Current status

Three of the private sector companies have tuna longline vessels come in under charter or joint venture arrangements.


Sportsfishing and gamefishing Edit

Current status

Several charter boats available in FSM, mainly associates with hotels.

Pohnpei Gamefishing Club has at least one tournament each month with around 20 vessels competing.


Bait fishing trials or activities Edit

Current status

No baitfishing trials or activities at present.


Other fishing methods trialled Edit

Current status

No other fishing methods conducted in nearshore waters at present.


References Edit

  • Crossland, J. and R. Grandperrin. 1979. Fisheries Directory of the South Pacific Commission region. South Pacific Commission, Noumea, New Caledonia.
  • Dalzell, P. and G. Preston. 1992. Deep reef slope fishery resources of the South Pacific — a summary and analysis of the dropline fishing survey data generated by the activities of the SPC Fisheries Programme between 1974 and 1988. Inshore Fisheries Research Project, Technical Document No. 2, South Pacific Commission, Noumea, New Caledonia. 299 p.
  • Gillett, R. In press. Domestic tuna industry development in the Pacific Islands — the current situation and considerations for future development assistance. FFA Report 03/01, Gillett, Preston and Associates Inc. 196 p.
  • SPC. 2003. Population statistics provided by the Demography Section of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community, Noumea, New Caledonia.
  • Whitelaw, W. 2001. Country guide to gamefishing in the western and central Pacific. Oceanic Fisheries Programme, Secretariat of the Pacific Community, Noumea, New Caledonia. 112 p.

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