Radin Hj Idris, representative speaker for the participants yesterday said that the seminar had indeed been a great help in opening their eyes and minds on the importance of the fish industry in the Sultanate and by being more competitive, effective and efficient may grant them the opportunity of extending their business overseas.
"After the seminar, we noticed too many weaknesses and things that we have yet to fix in achieving our objectives in becoming entrepreneurs who have a business that is competitive with the rest of the world, or even with neighbouring countries" he said. "Obviously to achieve these objectives, it takes hard work and a lot spending which I think is very hard to implement."
He felt that the improvements and objectives that were required seemed too difficult to achieve at first but with the seminar, it has allowed them to take a step further in achieving the goal of the expectations.
Radin also said that the collectively the participants felt that the fisheries industry in the Sultanate is still underdeveloped compared to neighbouring countries as well as those in Europe but at the same time, they felt the need to compete with these countries.
He highlighted that limited funding, weak support in the local market and absence of expertise in assisting them with achieving their objectives were some of the problems they faced in improving the underdeveloped fisheries industry.
As part of the suggestions made by the participants, Radin said, "Matters and programmes to be enforced by the government should first be discussed with us and provided with more flexibility. More importantly, the case is adapting to what we are able to try."
Other suggestions that were made included the supply of basic neccessities such as water and electricity, improvements in the quality of marine fish catch, a new marketplace to avoid the congestion at the active Gadong market and various others.
A total of 194 participants consisted of 110 representatives of companies operating in the capture fisheries, aquaculture, fish traders/mongers, 29 students from the Fisheries Faculty of Wasan Vocational School and 55 officials of the Department of Fisheries received certificates of participation yesterday at the closing ceremony held at the Setia Pahlawan Hall, Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources.
Present as the guest of honour was Permanent Secretary Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Amin Liew Abdullah who handed the certificates to the participants.
The Brunei Times