Lobster season has reopened, but Barbuda continues to face challenges in exporting to regional and international markets

A lease agreement between the Barbuda Fisher Folk Committee and the Barbuda Council is in its final stages of preparation, and will allow the sister-island to export lobster to international and other regional destinations.

Since Hurricane Irma in 2017, Barbuda has been experiencing challenges in reviving its lobster-export industry.

Senator Fabian Jones, who is responsible for the fisheries sector on the sister-island, reports that the lobster season reopened on July 1 with shipments being exported to Antigua some days after.

Meanwhile, Jones says, the Fisher Folk Committee was in negotiations for the lease, which would allow it to use a part of the Fisheries Complex to facilitate shipping to other destinations.  

However, while these discussions are in their final stages, the space originally requested is not available, so an alternate space is being assessed, Jones says.

Meanwhile, in terms of storage for the lobsters, fish and other marine products, Jones admits that this continues to be an issue. A part that was ordered to fix the freezer has not yet arrived on island, although the order was placed several weeks ago, he says.

Jones says a technician from the Fisheries Department in Antigua recently visited the sister island, and he should be dispatching a list of the items needed to address the current issues.