Ever Green Group – Myanmar
The People’s Coalition for Fisheries Justice/KIARA – Indonesia
SEAFish for Justice: About 182.552 Fishers Face Risks on Human Trafficking and Slavery in Southeast Asia
Surabaya, October 7 2016. At least 182.552 Fishers in Southeast Asia susceptible to the practices of slavery on fishing vessels. It was revealed in the Preliminary Meeting on “The Experience of Burmese, Cambodian and Indonesia Fishers on Fishing Vessels: Findings and Policy Recommendations for ASEAN” that was held by SEAFish for Justice in Surabaya, East Java, on 4-7 October 2016.
Regional coordinator of SEAFish for Justice/ Secretary General of KIARA, Abdul Halim noted, “The protection of fishers’ rights, has not been be a major concern for 10 ASEAN state members. In fact, most of fishers came from this region. Therefore, we urge the 10 ASEAN member state to ratify the Convention No. 188 year 2007 on Work in Fishing.
Center for Data and Information of SEAFish for Justice (October 2016) recorded:
First, 182.552 fishers in Southeast Asia came from Cambodia, Indonesia, Myanmar, The Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos (see table 1).
Second, there are 1.128 of foreign fishers at PT. Benjina Resources. The workers came from 4 majority countries, Thai (745 persons), Burmese (316 persons), Cambodian (58 persons) and Lao (8 persons).
Third, most of the fishers at PT. Charoen Phokpand Foods (Thailand) are Cambodian and Burmese. The workers entering Thailand through ports in Mahachai, Songkhla, Samae San, Ranong, Rayong, Kantang, Pattani, Pak Nam, and Samut Prakan. They were trafficked only at the price of (IDR) 3,664,900, or (Bath) 9,698.58, or (Euro) 250 per fisher.
“They work on fishing vessels under Japan, Malaysia, Korea, Taiwan, and Thailand flags. Ironically, both countries of origin and destination countries have not ratified ILO Convention No. 188 year 2007 on Work in Fishing. Herein lies the weakness of protection from 10 ASEAN members which work on fishing vessels,” Halim added.
Table 1: List of Origin Countries and Destination Countries of Fishers from Southeast Asia
|Origin Countries of Fishers||Destination Countries|
Sources: Center for Data and Information of SEAFish for Justice (October 2016)
Zaw Zaw Han, Executive Director of Ever Green Group (Myanmar), explained “One of slavery practices cause is a tempt to work in commercial vessels such as cargo, tankers, and cruise. It is widely experienced by the fishers from Myanmar, including who worked at PT. Pusaka Benjina Resources in the Aru Islands, Southeast Maluku. Therefore, the tightening process of recruiting candidates for fishers to work on fishing vessels is urgently needed.
SEAFish for Justice has recorded, unavailability of work training, lack of access to a complaint mechanism, and lack of law enforcement and lack of control of the situation that faced by fishers has caused slavery practices. “In this context, fishers from Southeast Asia susceptible to be trafficked and be slaved” Halim added.
Therefore, SEAFish for Justice urge ASEAN and its 10 state members to ratify ILO Convention No. 188 year 2007 on Work in Fishing, and to improve a regulatory system, an institutional and budgetary support, to provide protection and empowerment to the fisher candidates and the current fishers ***
For further information, please contact:
Abdul Halim, Regional Coordinator of SEAFish for Justice/ Secretary General of KIARA (Indonesia) at +62 815 53100 259
Zaw Zaw Han, Executive Director of Ever Green Group (Myanmar) at +95 9 973 117518
SEAFish for Justice (South East Asia Fish for Justice Network) is a civil society organization, aims on ensuring the fulfilment of coastal communities rights, e.g. traditional fisherfolk, fisherwoman, fish farmers and preservation of coastal ecosystems in the area of marine resources and fisheries management. The organization consists of 14 NGO’s and fisherfolk in 7 countries (Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines)