Meeting between Mauritania and the EU

Fish Market area in Nouakchott, Mauritania, Africa. © sxc

A meeting of the Joint Committee of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania
and the European Union was held in Nouakchott between 21 and
25 March 2010.

This was the first meeting at this level since 2008. In particular, it
made it possible to consider technical aspects concerning the fishing
activities of the European fleet in Mauritania. The two parties reached
agreement on the surveillance and control mechanisms to which the
European Union attaches great importance.

The discussions also sought to take stock of two years of implementing
support for the fishery sector as provided for by the protocol that entered
into force in 2008. This sectoral support made it possible to implement
activities in favour of the fishery sector and the Ban d’Arguin National
Park. The 2010 programming was presented according to a new approach
aimed at achieving an improved visibility of the actions to be undertaken.
The joint tools defined will permit a better implementation, thereby creating
conditions favourable to a good application of the agreement.

Dr Sidi Mohamed Ould Sidi, Secretary General of the Ministry of
Fisheries, and Mr Constantin Alexandrou, Head of the Unit Bilateral
Fishery Agreements and Control in International Waters of the Directorate
General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries of the European Commission,
signed a statement that must mark the continuation of fruitful
and constructive cooperation.

Almost 200 European vessels (for 437 licences issued in 2009) fish in
Mauritanian waters that are considered to be among the most abundant
in fish stocks of any in the world. Fishing is, together with
iron, Mauritania’s principal resource. In 2008 and 2009 the European
Union paid 86 and 76 million euros respectively to Mauritania
by the terms of the protocol, 27 million of which was to support
the fishery sector in Mauritania.