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Regional Fisheries

Video guest: Josephine Mwangi

September 2018
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Wednesday, 19 September 2018

Fisheries and aquaculture ministers from the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) called on the European Union, United Nations, World Bank and other bodies to provide adequate financial resources for the implementation of the Strategic Action Plan for Fisheries and Aquaculture adopted in Fiji in 2012. The ACP ministers urged the international community to agree to concrete actions to reduce the effects of climate change at the COP21 and to cooperate more closely with African, Caribbean and Pacific nations on illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and piracy. The group also called on the EU for support on dealing with the erosion of preferential tariffs for exports to EU markets from African, Caribbean and Pacific countries.

Tuesday, 04 August 2015

Spain and Curaçao have signed a framework agreement for technical cooperation to strengthen the fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. The agreement provides that both sides shall share data relevant to combating IUU fishing, including on tools used for control and inspection of fishing activities. There is also a training component to the agreement, whereby fisheries inspectors will receive both theoretical and practical training. Spain is one of the leading countries taking active steps to combat IUU fishing and has been involved in a number of international cooperation activities (e.g. Operation Sparrow).

The 4th meeting of ACP Ministers in charge of Fisheries and Aquaculture was held at ACP House in Brussels, from 22 to 23 July 2015. The roadmap highlights, inter alia, the points raised in the meeting: (i) adequate financial resources and collaboration with key partner institutions to support CAP fisheries, notably EU, FAO, IFAD, UNIDO and the World Bank; (ii) ambitious goals at COP21 in order to mitigate the negative effects that climate change has on the fisheries sector; (iii)  enhanced coordinated action to fight both Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing and piracy; (iv) development of aquaculture and fisheries sector as a means for creating decent jobs, especially for youth and women, as well as the preservation of aquatic biodiversity; (v)  coherence and appropriate policies among regional economic integration organisations and regional fisheries organisations to achieve this aim.

Monday, 27 July 2015

The 2015 edition of the regional fisherfolk mentor programme was held in Antigua, , from July 6 to 9, and brought together over 21 mentors and resource persons from 16 Caribbean countries. The programme was established in 2013 to provide support and encourage the active participation of fisherfolk organizations in fisheries governance and management. The key objectives of the workshop include: (i) strengthen the mentors’ capabilities in mentoring and facilitation and project cycle management; (ii) familiarization with the positions of fisherfolk on key fisheries and related policies for small scale fisheries development in the Caribbean. Fisherfolk were also able to share common challenges, such as, inadequate facilities for landing, storage, processing and marketing of fish and fish products; limited capacity to maintain the quality of fish from harvesting to marketing.

Thursday, 23 July 2015

How can we? These are the questions that African and European fishers will aim to answer, coming together with at an exciting event to be hosted by The Long Distance Advisory Council (LDAC)  will bring together African and European NGOs and high-level policy makers in September to discuss combatting illegal fishing, protection of stocks from over-exploitation, and the social and economic benefits in non-EU waters. Currently, more than 25% of fish caught by EU vessels are caught outside EU waters. EU Fisheries Commissioner Karmenu Vella will address the conference via video-link, alongside Isabella Lövin, Foreign Affairs Minister of Sweden, as well as from ministerial representation from Mauritania, the President of ATLAFCO-COMHAFAT, and the General Fisheries Director of Spain, Andrés Hermida, amongst others.

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

The Spanish Fisheries Confederation (CEPESCA) has pronounced their "bittersweet" feelings following the conclusion of the new fisheries protocol agreed between the European Union (EU) and the Government of Mauritania. It will last four years and allows over 50 Spanish fishing vessels to continue fishing in Mauritanian waters. CEPESCA welcomes the parts of the new protocol that incorporates technical improvements (e.g. all year round fishing for shell fish; increase hake fish quotas; access to abundant tuna resources), but recognises that a number of issues that Spanish fisheries industry had lobbied/petitioned on were not brought into the new deal: shellfish capture; trawlers and longliners targeting demersal species; exclusion of cephalopod fleet and denial of octopus surplus catch; rejection of a new category for freezer trawling for demersal species. The financial fee was reduced to € 55 million annually (from € 67 million) and an annual aid package of €4 million was agreed to.

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

MEP Nirj Deva has published an opinion of the Committee on Development for the Committee on Fisheries on a motion for a non-legislative resolution on the draft Council decision on the Conclusion of the Protocol setting out the fishing opportunities and financial contribution provided for in he Fisheries Partnership Agreement with the Republic of Guinea Bissau. It calls for “access by EU vessels to the surplus of fisheries resources should be limited according to the maximum sustainable yield once the nutritional needs of the local population is met.” It also makes the suggestion that there should be programmes to develop local fishing capacities, taking into consideration the local economy and local employment.

Thursday, 02 July 2015

The European Parliament Committee on Fisheries has published its recommendation on the Declaration on granting fishing opportunities in EU waters to fishing vessels flying the flag of the Boliarian Republic of Venezuela in the economic exclusive zone (EEZ) off the coast of French Guiana.It recognises that “the processing industry based in French Guiana depends in part on the exploitation of living natural resources in EEZ by Venezuelan vessels.” Despite there not being an international agreement between the EU and Venezuela in fisheries cooperation, in practice fishing is allowed. Following the European Court of Justice’s ruling, the Parliament approves that fishing should continue to be carried out in this area. It also notes that Venezuela has respected trade-offs associated with the agreement in relation ot fish stock, fishing gear, vessel monitoring and more. This shall set a precedent for third parties fishing in EU Overseas territories and Countries (OCT) regions.

Monday, 29 June 2015

The European Commission has adopted a proposal for a regulation to upgrade the EU framework for the collection, management and use of the data for fisheries. The collection of this data is deemed to be crucial for improving the scientific advice necessary for the implementation of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).It also means that data should be more easily available. The new system is expected to make it easier to achieve optimal levels that allow fish stocks to regenerate - known as Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY)- and aims to achieve this for all the stocks fished in EU waters by 2020. Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Karmenu Vella said: "If our extensive knowledge and data on EU fisheries is not accessible to all, the objective for sustainable management of our resources will not be possible."

The ACP Parliamentary Assembly adopted a resolution on the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) between ACP regions and the European Union, reiterating its call for more flexibility on the EU side in negotiating contentious issues with the three remaining regions which have yet to sign a comprehensive EPA with the EU. The Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA), Central Africa and the Pacific regions have not signed, although some countries have individually agreed to interim agreements while awaiting the conclusion of the full regional EPAs. Pacific ACP countries have further asserted that, in its current form, the interim EPA (already signed by the larger economies in the region, namely Papua New Guinea and Fiji) is not suitable for most Pacific States due to the fact that as Smaller Island States they do not have the capacity to derive benefits from it.