BFAR turns over P4.7-M fish port to Ilocos Norte town

LAOAG CITY — The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) has turned over a PHP4.75-million communal fish landing center to the fisheries association in Bacarra, Ilocos Norte consisting of at least seven coastal barangays.

The two-story building located in Natba village is envisioned to help the fishing community improve their quality of life through improved fish production and processing.

“We’re lucky to have been included as one of the beneficiaries of the fish landing center because not everyone can have this facility,” said Bacarra town councilor Mario Lazo.

During the turn-over ceremony on Monday, Ilocos Norte Governor Ma. Imelda Josefa Marcos challenged the fisherfolk of Bacarra to maximize the use of the fish port and refrain from being branded as another ‘white elephant’ project.

“It is important to make it fully functional and help each other as the coastal community continues to lag behind the rest of the population in poverty,” she said.

With the impact of climate change, Marcos further said fish production in the province is being affected thus there is a need to further improve fish production, processing and packaging of fish products.

The establishment of more communal fish ports in coastal municipalities nationwide is one of the national government’s commitment to uplift the living conditions of the marginalized sector particularly fishers, traders and consumers by having ready access to fresh, safe and affordable fishery products.

The CFLC is also envisioned as a training venue for fish processing, proper sanitation, proper handling and marketing, including conservation and protection of fisheries resources.