Seychelles hosts the second meeting of the AU platform for SIDS – Work is continuing on the establishment of a fisheries platform that will enable Africa’s small island nations to join forces for discussions at the international level, through a three-day training course in Seychelles.
The three-day workshop is organised by the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR), which is implementing the second phase of the Fisheries Governance Project (FishGov2).
The project aims to strengthen the contribution of AU-IBAR member states to sustainable fisheries and aquaculture in order to achieve its objectives as set out in the AU Agenda 2063.
The projects are funded by the European Union (EU) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA).
In his address, Seychelles’ Minister for Fisheries, Jean-Francois Ferrari, said that “it is our sincere objective to advance our causes at the regional and continental levels through this platform and we have agreed to do so together. We should learn from each other’s strength to thrive and create a link between member states, as we have the same goals of reducing poverty, increasing food security and promoting economic growth.”
He stressed the need for African small island developing states and Madagascar to work together in international negotiations to achieve better results.
Alongside Seychelles, the countries represented at the workshop, which is being held at the Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort, are Mauritius, Comoros, Madagascar, Cape Verde and Sao Tome & Principe.
Since 2014, AU-IBAR has been managing a fisheries governance project and this has two components. The first was institutional capacity building to improve fisheries governance in Africa, which ended in 2018.
Building the platform to do this is the second part of the project which aims to improve sustainable fisheries management and aquaculture development in Africa.
Mr Ferrari was pleased to note that following the first meeting, there will be a two-day training to build the capacity of AU SIDS and other pre-identified negotiators in terms of international negotiations and formulating a mechanism to coordinate common positions of the African community in global fora for fisheries, aquaculture, aquatic biodiversity, environmental sustainability and climate change regimes.
Beyond training, one of the objectives of this second meeting is to chart the way forward for strategic positions. This will help ensure a greater contribution to food and nutrition security, poverty reduction and economic growth, in line with the Malabo Declaration calling for action on the transformation of African agriculture by 2025.
Seychelles hosts the second meeting of the AU platform for SIDS