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Asia-Pacific Fishery Commission

Regional Consultative Forum held in Cebu to discuss key issues in fisheries and aquaculture

07/05/2018

Cebu, Philippines

APFIC Regional Conultative Forum (7-9 May, 2018)

80 participants from 16 countries, alongside representatives from ten regional and international partner organizations, came together to share advances and experiences pertaining to sustainable and resilient fisheries and aquaculture for blue growth in the region. Participants share national and regional efforts in addressing priority issues, such as combatting IUU fishing, strengthening regulation on aquaculture, implementing good fisheries and aquaculture development approach and practices such as EAF, EAA, aquaculture zonal development, innovative aquaculture systems and practices and developing inclusive and gender sensitive fisheries and aquaculture value chains.

The Forum acknowledge that addressing remaining challenges requires concerted efforts within and across governments, NGO, CSO and development and research partners. These include: i) improved knowledge on the contributions of the sector to food and nutrition security, livelihoods and economic growth, the impacts of changes in the environment on the sector and dependent communities, the environmental footprints of the sector; ii) strengthened enabling environments, knowledge bases and human capacity for adopting appropriate planning and management tools, including ICTs; iii) increased awareness and collaborative efforts to address issues relating to aquaculture feed, risk of AMR associated with aquaculture and reduced fish loss in post-harvesting; and iv) clearer understanding of the gender-differentiate roles of women and men along the value chains.

The Forum recognized a great need in many countries for reinforced legal frameworks and guiding policies to ensure a human rights-based and environmentally friendly development of the region’s fisheries and aquaculture sectors in line with the Small-scale Fisheries Voluntary Guidelines and the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries. In addition, more targeted DRM and climate change strategies and technologies for the sector are needed in several countries. There is also a need for increased efforts to combat IUU fishing in the region. Continued and strengthened sharing of experiences and knowledge and collaborative efforts across the countries in the region are required to attain the full potential of blue growth in the Asia-Pacific.

The Forum developed recommendations to address these issues for consideration by the APFIC Session, held the same week.