Roughly two weeks ago we heard rumblings that the export ban on Indonesian corals & anemones was about to be lifted but the claims were not substantiated until now. This is great news for everyone in the industry after waiting for a long 5 months. In May of this year, the Indonesian Fisheries put a ban on exportation of corals. As many of you know, it really put the hurt on the importers and exporters that heavily relied on the Indonesian market for the source of their income.
Earlier this week, the Fisheries Ministry lifted the ban on exportation! What does this mean for our beloved hobby and for the industry? It means that we will again see a much greater diversity of livestock in our retail stores.
There will likely be new restrictions and regulations in place to minimize or curtail collectors from illegally harvesting corals from the wild. New regulations may increase the cost of many Indonesian corals, but to what extent only time will tell. The assurance that Indonesian corals will be harvested in a sustainable manner moving forward is a win for everyone.
Below is an official translated statement from the Indonesian Corals, Shell and Fish Ornamental Association (AKKII) with an emphasis added from Reef Builders. To see the Reef Builders article click here.
“Indonesian Coral and Anemone Ban has been lifted. Following a conciliation meeting in front of all different ministries in the Indonesian National Parliament. The Indonesian fisheries ministry has been asked to revoke their May 4th instruction of not issuing Health Certificate for domestic and international shipments of corals and anemones.
Local quarantines are slowly receiving these instructions, so export should be allowed again very soon. But it will take a bit of time until the complete administrative and chain of supply starts off completely again.
So far there haven’t been many regulation changes, but we can expect some changes to happen very soon. Also, we can expect, the fisheries department, to be on the look out for any wrongdoing in order to justify another closure. The consequences would be disastrous for our industry.
This trade ban has been disastrous for many peoples in this industry around the world, with many collectors, exporters, farmers, shop owners… closing down during the summer. But it’s great news that it has been lifted, and we can enjoy once more the beauty of Indonesian corals.
Nevertheless, it’s time for this industry to stop taking these corals for granted, and accept their real value. We should now change our perception that we can’t get these corals as many as we want, for ever, and do the right things in order to not give bullets to the peoples trying to shut us down. These regulations surrounding this industry must be improved and followed, so those only responsible stakeholders are allowed to work, for the benefit of all. Our industry must self regulate so the peoples that are doing the right thing don’t suffer because of few, ready for anything players.
We would like to thank the tremendous work, done by the Indonesian Corals, Shell and Fish Ornamental Association (AKKII), and their new board, that was really challenged like no others, just a month after being elected. We can be sure that they will come out stronger, and have now a great opportunity to lay down, the foundation for a sustainable, long lasting industry.
This is just the beginning of their work, as now the work to make sure this doesn’t happen lay ahead. Our thought for the thousands of Indonesian farmers that held off that many long months without any income, and kept on taking care of all these cultured corals, all but for our own pleasure.”