Conakry: fishery experts and stakeholders meet to discuss agreements and transparency in the sector across the sub-region

About twenty fishery players strengthened their capacities at a workshop organised in Conakry by the PRCM and the Sub-Regional Fishery Commission (SRFC) on 1-2 April 2019.

The PRCM and the Sub-Regional Fisheries Commission (SRFC) jointly organised a workshop in Conakry, Guinea on 1-2 April 2019 to build the capacities of about twenty fisheries stakeholders in the areas of preparation, negotiation, monitoring and evaluation of fishery agreements.

In attendance were officials of all SRFC member states, participants representing the African Confederation of Artisanal Fishery Professional Organisations (CAOPA), national professional organisations, non-governmental organisations as well as experts from the sub-region. The SRFC Permanent Secretary, Mr. Malal Sané, called for a review of the conditions in which fishery agreements are entered into, indicating that these should be underpinned by the logic of sustainability and partnership.

For his part, the PRCM Director, Dr Ahmed Senhoury, regretted that agreements that are often less favourable to countries in the West Africa sub-region are signed, the reason of which partly lies in the weak negotiating capacity of the appointed delegates. Yet, poorly negotiated agreements have a negative impact on fishery resources and the sustainable development of fisheries. Participants were briefed in detailed about the benefits and drawbacks of such agreements as well as on their environmental and social impact on partner countries, with their attention drawn to the interest of undertaking collective discussions on the convention on minimal conditions for access.

Speakers also seized the opportunity to remind countries that have acceded to FiTI (Fisheries Transparency Initiative) standards the obligation to publish the texts of fishery agreements to which they are party as well as an updated list of licenses they have granted so far. At the end of the workshop, an independent sub-regional task force on fishery agreements in SRFC member states was put in place.

For more information, please see the vidéo or download the workshop report.