World Fisheries Day: CAOPA, Partners to Challenge Barriers

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Local fishermen in action.

Liberia Artisanal Fishermen’s Association Gets Invite

Artisanal fishing activity in Africa is mainly done on marine and inland water. Captured fish sold to consumers is a main source of animal protein for most African families. According to the World Fish Center report “Fish Supply and Food Security for Africa,” about 400 million Africans depend on fish for animal protein.

The latest FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization) figures indicate that 10 percent of people on the continent are engaged in fishing and aquaculture, making it the second largest continent after Asia in terms of jobs in the sector.

Furthermore, fisheries’ contribution to the (GDP) of all African countries reached US$1.91 million in 2014, with marine and inland artisanal fisheries accounting for more than half of this figure.

Despite marine and inland artisanal fisheries’ contribution to food security, employment and Africa’s economy, distinct artisanal fishing communities on the continent are on a slow pace to decoding modern fishery methodologies and administrative strategies aimed to level up the demand and challenges facing them.

However, for this year’s World Fisheries Day celebration, artisanal fisheries organizations on the continent, including African Confederation of Artisanal Fisheries Professional Organizations (CAOPA), Federation of Artisanal Fishermen at the Indian Oceans (FPAOI), Fishermen and Boat Owners Association of Seychelles (FBOA) in partnership with the Professional Fisheries Organizations of the Seychelles (PFS), will be formulating strategies that will address the present and future conditions of Africa’s artisanal fishing communities.

According to a release, the World Fisheries Day celebration will be held in Mahe, Seychelles from November 19-21.

Artisanal fishing communities from around Africa including Liberia Artisanal Fishermen Association (LAFA) will take part in discussions intended for the advancement of Africa’s artisanal fishery communities.

Ttopics to be discussed include blue growth and artisanal fishing, access rights to resources for artisanal fisheries, need for a holistic approach to policy reform affecting coastal communities, change practices and mentalities, according to the release.

The purpose of the workshops is to formulate relevant proposals that will improve the organizational and functional framework of professional organizations which, as a result, will strengthen their involvement in the definition and implementation of projects and programs in the artisanal fisheries sector, according to the release.

Moreover, the release said that two public debate conferences will be organized during the two evenings of the three days.

The World Fisheries Day is an annual event that aims to highlight the importance of artisanal fisheries at the social, economic, cultural and food security levels in many parts of the world. It helps to highlight the bonds of solidarity that have been established between the various artisanal fishermen’s organizations throughout the world. It is an opportunity to highlight topical issues that are essential for the future of the sector, the release said.

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