On 16th November, delegates at the fifth SLOW LIFE Symposium, hosted at Soneva Fushi pledged their immediate and continued support to secure the future of sustainable fishing in the Maldives
Responding to a direct request from the Maldivian Minister for Fisheries, Mohamed Shainee, to make the country’s existing sustainable fishing practices viable long-term, delegates have agreed to ongoing actions to realise this vision. Strategies outlined for development include a unique programme to explore the finance required to support the future conservation of the waters of Baa Atoll, which is the only UNESCO World Biosphere reserve in the Maldives and home to some of the world’s richest coral reefs and marine ecosystems. They also included exploratory discussions around the viability of ‘debt for nature swaps’ in the Maldives.
The actions come as pressure grows on the Maldives to continue supporting their net-free and shark-free fishing practices, in light of competition from unsustainable fisheries, who can operate more cheaply. Speaking at the conference, Chairman and CEO, Soneva Group and Founder of the SLOW LIFE Symposium Sonu Shivdasani also announced the creation of a $100,000 investment fund to ensure that early stage initiatives can be given the finance required to succeed.
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