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Monday, August 3, 2015

Countries collaborate against rogue fishing


Many countries have indicated interest to join in the fight against rogue fishing which is estimated to have shed about $23billion (N4.58trillion) from the global economy, NaijaAgroNet reports.

The growing number of countries ratifying the international agreement to combat unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing is fueling interest on how best to implement the instrument.

The agreement, NaijaAgroNet gathered, will begin operational once 25 countries deposit their instrument of ratification, known as acceptance of accession. As of now, 12 countries have done so, the latest being Iceland in June while two more states will soon join them.

According to the terms of the agreement, NaijaAgroNet learnt, fishermen, port authorities, coast guards and navies will be able to collaborate to strengthen inspections and control procedures at ports and on vessels. It also allows states to prevent the landings of catches derived from IUU fishing by vessels regardless of the flag they fly.

The Chief of Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO's) Development Law Service, Blaise Kuemlangan said, "The Agreement aims to harmonize port controls in order to prevent illegally caught fish from ever entering international markets through ports. The ability to turn away vessels taking part in IUU fishing will greatly reduce opportunities for selling their catch, decreasing IUU fishing worldwide."

FAO Representative in Cabo Verde, Remi Nono Womdim, on his part said, "Fighting illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing is a key priority along the Atlantic coast of Africa, where IUU fishing contributes to overfishing, creating negative effects for the economies of these countries,"

"Many countries in the region have the will to address IUU fishing, but require the most cost-effective tools and an understanding about how these can be implemented at the legal, policy and institutional level," said Womdim.

Cyriacus Nnaji/GEE
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