JOHOR BARU: There are lesser foreign fishing vessels encroaching into Malaysian waters due to continuous patrols conducted by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA).
Its director-general, Maritime Admiral Datuk Mohd Amdan Kurish said that with the increased vigilance losses incurred by the encroachment was reduced from RM3bil to RM10mil a year.
Amdan attributed this to the establishment of the MMEA in 2006.
However, he added that the lack of patrol boats or vessels had hampered the MMEA operations in curtailing the encroachment.
“Foreign fishermen normally enter our waters during rainy seasons, but continuous monitoring by the MMEA had pushed them back 100 nautical miles from our shoreline,” he said.
Amdan commented on this at the launch of the Maritime Eyes And Ears At Sea (EyeS) community programme between the MMEA and the Johor Bunkering Services Association by Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Ahmad Maslan in Tanjung Langsat recently.
Ahmad Maslan said the MMEA flotilla would be beef up to 18 more locally built interceptor boats costing RM140 million this year to bring the total to 246 boats.