FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific
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FAO helps strengthen community-based fisheries for the Pacific

11/03/2018 Apia, Samoa

FAO has been recently approved two projects to strengthen community-fisheries in Tonga and Samoa. The aim of the projects is to strengthen the technical capacity for both countries to improve and streamline their community-based fisheries management programmes.

These programmes play an integral role in ensuring the effective management of coastal fisheries resources, which is a primary source of living for the majority of coastal fishing communities in both countries.

The development of these new projects were broadly based on the results of reviews of community-based fisheries management programmes conducted by FAO last year. The main outcome of the reviews identified key recommendations on how to improve their respective programmes.

In Tonga the programme is called Special Management Areas (SMAs) and will largely focus on streamlining and improving processes to develop new SMAs, deploy and maintain SMA markers, monitor SMAs’ performances. The programme will also involve monitoring, control and surveillance (MCS), data and information flows and awareness raising.

In Samoa, community-based fisheries management programme (CBFMP) will mainly aim to streamline programme development, monitoring, data and information flows and awareness activities.

Both projects will produce new, updated manuals for their respective programmes to effectively streamline their processes. These materials will be a good resource for national fisheries agencies, given the growing number of fishing communities in Tonga and Samoa under their programmes.

Consequently, training of key stakeholders on relevant materials produced will be provided, including dialogues for stakeholders to share lessons learned, as well as build capacity and awareness to strengthen both programmes.

The projects were developed closely with respective national fisheries agencies in Tonga and Samoa as key stakeholders of the programmes. Project documents were officially signed off by FAO and respective governments in December 2017 (Tonga) and January 2018 (Samoa) and are now ready in full swing for full implementation over the next 2 years.

FAO looks forward to a smooth and successful implementation of the projects with both countries. They will overall contribute towards ensuring food and nutrition security from effectively-managed coastal fisheries in the region.

In 2017 a video titled “Community-based fisheries management - Fishing voices from the Pacific” was produced documenting the voices of fishing communities and stakeholders in Fiji, Samoa and Tonga.

8 minute version       4 minute version

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