Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated fishing (IUU fishing) causes West African countries to lose around 1.5 billion euros. The phenomenon takes place in a difficult context for the structures dedicated to Fisheries Monitoring, Control and Surveillance (MCS). The body of fisheries inspectors and that of observers are aging and understaffed. According to the baseline situation carried out in June 2018, the average age of inspectors and observers in the Member States of the SRFC is around 40 years old. In addition, there is a lack of capacity to control fishing vessels in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

Thus, to contribute to the prevention and measures to combat IUU fishing, the SRFC and the EFCA co-organized, from 07 to 09 in Nouadhibou and from 22 to 24 February 2022 in Nouakchott, two capacity building workshops for forty (40) GCM Fisheries Controllers on fishing vessel control and inspection techniques, based on the EFCA manual “Introduction to Sea Fisheries Inspection for Non-EU Inspectors ".

These sessions follow the training of one hundred and twenty-two (122) fisheries inspectors from Cabo Verde, Gambia, Guinea, Senegal and Sierra Leone, and are part of the implementation of activities the PESCAO Program “Improvement of fisheries governance in West Africa”, funded to the SRFC by the European Union (EU), through ECOWAS, for an amount of 3,625,000 euros.

These training workshops, the opening ceremony of which was co-chaired by the Permanent Secretary of the SRFC and the Captain of the Vessel Commanding Officer of the GCM, made it possible to improve the skills of the participants on: i. the essential knowledge to carry out an inspection of a maritime fishing vessel (geodetic bases, the main international texts, the management of fisheries resources and the powers of inspectors); ii. The inspection methodology, at sea and on land, which has three main stages, including preparing the inspection, carrying out the inspection and concluding the inspection; and iii. The practice of lessons received on a Turkish coastal pelagic purse seiner and a Spanish boat fishing for hake.

Furthermore, it is important to note that for the sustainability of the action and the empowerment of the targets, the EFCA Experts are associated with local resource persons. The latter were selected at the start of the project and trained on the control and inspection of fishing vessels, from October 23 to 26, 2018 in Vigo, Spain. Also, the manual “Introduction to fisheries inspection at sea and in port” is given to each trained inspector.


Sunday 20 March 2022