World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Sri Lanka: Close to 18,500 vessels lost or damaged

Sri Lanka’s fishermen try to rebuild after tsunami

Close to 18,500 vessels lost or damaged

January 14, Colombo -- Sri Lanka’s fishing industry could take years to recover after the devastation of the Boxing Day tsunami says the United Nations.

Fishing is a primary source of livelihood for much of the population hit by the tsunami.

“Preliminary figures show that so far close to 18,500 fishing vessels have been reported lost or damaged,” said Miguel Bermeo, head of the UN in Sri Lanka. “This will hit already poor families hard, because fishing is what supports people in coastal communities and what keeps them out of poverty,” he said.

Over 80 percent of the fishing fleet may have been lost, according to the UN.

“This is just one area where the tsunami has put back development and slowed people’s rise from poverty,” said Christine Spoerel, Deputy Resident Representative of the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Sri Lanka. The UN system will soon launch a major programme to repair or replace boats, engines and fishing equipment so fishing can resume in the shortest time possible. UNDP is collating and distributing statistics and information from a wide variety of sources about affected areas. This is being used by development agencies and NGOs to better target relief and reconstruction efforts.

“In the fishing industry, as in many other industries in this country, donors and development agencies will need to help the government rebuild,” said Ms. Spoerel.

The average price of a fishing vessel with fishing gear in Sri Lanka can range from about US$ 1,200 for a sea worthy canoe to US$ 45,000 for a larger boat with an inboard engine. With more than half of the country living on less than two dollars a day, many fishing families have been hit hard.

Over 7,500 fishermen were killed, 5,600 are still missing and over 90,000 displaced when the tidal wave hit on the 26th of December. Many support industries, such as cold storage facilities, icemakers, market places, harbours and anchorages were also lost.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news