Participants at the FLOW6 Meeting held at the FFA Conference Center in Honiara
A five day regional Fisheries Licensing Officer’s Workshop commenced on Monday at the FFA Headquarters in Honiara.
The Workshop is being attended by Licensing Officers from 15 Pacific Island FFA member countries enabling them to share knowledge and experience in the application of their respective licensing processes and conditions at the national, sub-regional and regional operation levels.
In his opening statement the Deputy Director General, James Movick, stressed of the importance of the License Officer’s role as part of an integrated Monitoring, Control and Surveillance (MCS) system. “You are a vital conduit with all stakeholders across the broad spectrum of national agencies, fishing industries and policy makers, ensuring timely dissemination of up-to-date and accurate licensing information to respective national and regional enforcement agencies, as well as to other relevant stakeholders.”
This is part of the FFA’s overall effort of enhancing member capability to provide greater control in combating IUU (Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated) fishing activities within waters under national jurisdictions and adjacent waters through effective and harmonized licensing procedures and conditions.
In 2009 the estimated average annual IUU catch in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (of which a vast majority of catch is taken in and around the waters of the FFA member countries) was between 786,000t and 1,730,000t (valued between USD707m and USD1557m). This represents a considerable amount of lost revenue to member countries and is one of the reasons why effective licensing processes are vitally important.
The Workshop is consistent with the Agency Strategic direction and Annual Work Program of the Fisheries Operation Division, ensuring a well managed tuna fisheries is harvested sustainably through the delivery of the Regional Monitoring Control and Surveillance Strategy.
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