The Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Ms Barbara Creecy has instructed the the Directorate: Appeals and Legal Review, within the Department, of Forestry, Fisheries and Environment to ensure she is able to conclude the FRAP 2021/22 appeals process by no later than October 2023.
“The allocation of commercial fishing rights is central to job creation, food security, and the livelihoods of many fishers and fishing communities. Moreover, finality on the allocations of fishing rights is essential for a stable fishing industry that attracts and secures investment,” said Minister Creecy.
“It is also essential to managing the development and sustainable use of marine and coastal resources; to maximising the economic potential of the ﬁsheries sector; and to protecting the integrity and quality of the country’s marine and coastal ecosystems,” the Minister added.
The Department received 2 473 applications for the allocation of commercial fishing rights across 9 (nine) fishing sectors, namely, Hake Deep Sea Trawl; Hake Longline; South Coast Rock Lobster; Small Pelagic (Sardine and Anchovy); Kwa Zulu Natal Crustacean Trawl; Demersal Shark; Squid; Tuna Pole-Line and Traditional Line fish. The Department’s decisions in relation to the FRAP 2021/2022 were finalised during February 2022.
The Directorate: Appeals and Legal Review (Cape Town) (Appeals Directorate), within the Department, who are responsible for the administration and processing of the FRAP 2021/2022 appeals, received a total of 1 213 appeals against the decisions of the delegated authorities across the aforementioned nine fishing sectors.
For the sake of efficiency, expedience and to ensure a fair and proper process and outcome, the Appeals Directorate is administering these 1213 appeals on a sector-by-sector basis, in phases, with due regard to the commencement of the fishing season for each sector.
The phases and anticipated finalisation dates for each phase is as follows:
- Phase one of the appeals process, which was completed on 2 December 2022, dealt with the appeals in the Demersal Shark sector, the KwaZulu-Natal Crustacean Trawl sector and with Miscellaneous and non-compliant appeals.
- Phase two of the appeals process is presently under consideration and deals with the appeals in the South Coast Rock Lobster sector and the Traditional Line fish sector. These appeals are due to be finalised by 28 February 2023. The Department is committed to meet this timeline.
- Phase three of the appeals process deals with the Tuna Pole Line and Squid Sectors. These appeals are currently under consideration by the Minister’s Appeals Advisory Team for their recommendations to Minister. The proposed date for finalisation of these appeals is 30 April 2023.
- Phase Four of the appeals process deals with the appeals in Hake Deep Sea Trawl and Hake Longline sectors. Considering the volume (120 Hake Deep Sea Trawl and 280 Hake Longline) and complexity of appeals in this sector, the proposed date for finalisation of these appeals is 30 July 2023.
- Phase Five of the appeals process deals with the appeals in the Small Pelagic: Sardine (169 appeals) and Anchovy (230 appeals) sectors. The Department is endeavouring to complete phase five of the appeal process by 30 October 2023.
These timeframes are subject to review, but the Department is endeavouring to complete each phase of the appeal process within the proposed timeframes. The Department will also, on an ongoing basis, publish its progress in relation to each phase of the appeals process on its website.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic Of South Africa: Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment.