— As EU-Liberia Dialogue Begins
The Government of Liberia, through the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority in collaboration with the Liberia Maritime Authority, has expressed optimism that the yellow card issued by the European Union will soon be lifted.
In 2016, Liberia was issued the yellow card as a result of a fishing vessel that was placed on black list but was at the same time fishing in Liberian waters, thus showing the country’s lack of effective regulatory and monitoring control of distance water fishing flagged vessels.
As a result, a European Union delegation is in Liberia as guests of the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority and the Liberia Maritime Authority to hold discussions on the possibility of lifting the Yellow Card.
Welcoming the EU delegation to Liberia Monday November 16, 2022 at the start of the three-day technical fisheries meeting at NaFAA’s Corporate Headquarters, Director General Emma Metieh Glassco expressed optimism of Liberia receiving a green card from EU at the end of the dialogue.
Madam Glassco assured that Liberia has met all of the technical requirements set by the European Union on illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activities. “We are very optimistic this EU-Liberia dialogue will be successful for the lifting of the yellow card imposed on Liberia”.
Speaking also during the opening session of the dialogue, the Commissioner of the Liberia Maritime Authority, Len Eugene Nagbe, confirmed that they have over the years worked collaboratively with the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority in the fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activities. “The fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing has over the years been a priority of the Liberian government. This is why, with the support of our partners, we have been engaged into many activities.”
Commissioner Nagbe clarified that Liberia’s fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activities is not In the interest of the European Union but, for the sustainability of its resources. “It is the duty of Liberia through the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority and the Liberia Maritime Authority to protect the resources of Liberia.”
For his part, the head of the European Commission Unit for Illegal, Unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fisheries policy, Mr. Roberto Cesari, acknowledged that Liberia has been making progress in its legal framework and monitoring mechanism, and the team was in the country to further assess the progress made.