For sustainable fishing

To improve fisheries management in the ACP countries so that the fish resources of these countries can be exploited in a sustainable manner: that is the objective of the ACP Fish II Programme. Launched in June 2009 for five years, it is financed to the amount of 30 million euros under the 9th European Development Fund. It originated in a bitter truth: the failure of fisheries governance at global level, a factor in the impoverishment of natural resources and of the human communities that depend directly on them. While millions of people in the ACP countries are dependent on subsistence fishing, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU fishing) has developed that reduces the revenue obtained from legal activities

The ACP Fish II Programme aims to support the development of rational fisheries management to ensure a virtuous and effective marine economy. The availability of fish for local communities, processors and exporters is a measure of the health of a country’s economy as a whole. The programme is structured around a number of components: management, control, research, regulation and knowledge sharing, and at local as well as international level. It seeks to encourage expertise in the ACP countries through three kinds of instrument: technical assistance, training, and the facilitation of workshops or meetings. Given its extensive geographical scope, Fish II was designed as a decentralised programme consisting of a Coordination Unit in Brussels and six regional facilitation units: West Africa, East Africa, Central Africa, Southern Africa, the Pacific and the Caribbean.  
“The first part of the programme involved asking the fishery organisations and administrations in each country, on the occasion  of the workshops held at the end of 2009, to identify their needs and  rank them in order of priority,” explains Gustavo Miranda, the programme coordinator. “Our regional managers then drew up action plans and we are now preparing the calls for tender that will make it possible to launch concrete projects. Our initial concern is for long-term projects. Short-term projects will then follow, the cost of which is between 10 000 and 50 000 euros. The important thing is to prepare the terms of reference for all the projects by December 2010. We have also launched a second series of workshops to prepare part two of the programme that will run from June 2011 to mid-2013.”  
The programme’s mission is to ensure that fishery policies apply the internationally recognised principles and  standards, such as the UN Law of the Sea, the FAO Compliance Agreement, the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries and the international plan of action to prevent IUU fishing.
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