Fishing is a traditional business on Nevis and the demand for fresh fish continues to grow as people become more health conscious. The Department of Fisheries is charged with the overall responsibility of overseeing the fishing industry on the island. Some of the specific duties of the department include:
- Registering all fishing vessels.
- Registering fishermen.
- Monitoring landing sites and collecting data at these sites.
- Analyzing data collected
- Reviewing requests for duty free concessions and making the necessary recommendations for such.
- Advising fishermen on all aspects of fisheries.
- Conducting training sessions with fishermen.
- Issuing export certificates for conch and lobster.
- Encourage wise use and conservation of the fishery resources
- Encourage and support the establishment of groups including fisher folk associations.
The Department of fisheries is guided by the Mission Statement: “To assess, regulate and promote sustainable use of the fisheries resources of Nevis, and to manage the harvesting of stocks to ensure food security, also to promote aquaculture, and encourage conservation practices”.
The Department is headed by a Director supported by a five member staff.