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Africa: Exploitation of African seas and fisheries - Time to stop turning a blind eye by Bob Dewar March 29,2012   |  Source: AllAfrica

The history of Europe's fishing agreements with African and other developing countries has been chequered.

In late 2011, there were 9 current and 5 dormant African fish protection acts (FPAs). The first phase ended in 2002 when it was acknowledged that the 'pay, fish and go' approach had to convert to 'partnership agreements'. But the next phase also came up short, not least because these agreements weren't integrated into food security or anti-poverty planning.

So the 2012 reform of the Common Fisheries Policy, with stated objectives to bring (over)fished stocks to sustainable levels in order to benefit EU citizens and stewardship of the seas, is a welcome opportunity to do better. The Europeans need real reform in their own back yard - dramatically rebuilding stocks, preventing over-capacity, over-fishing and damage to the environment. And the mirror of better behaviour should then be shone abroad, so that African and other developing countries get maximum benefit.

The Africans, in turn, need to think through how new 'Sustainable Fisheries Agreements' (the new name given to EU fisheries agreements with developing countries, emphasizing 'partnership, development and sustainable fisheries') can help bring better governance, food security and poverty reduction.

A big

 

© 2012 AllAfrica

Theme(s): Fisheries Development and Aquaculture.

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