Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific

Timor-Leste becomes 21st member of Asia Pacific Fishery Commission

Bangkok, 22 Jun 2011 -- Timor-Leste has joined the Asia Pacific Fishery Commission (APFIC) to become the 21st member of the regional fisheries advisory and consultative body.

APFIC is an inter-governmental Regional Fishery Body which works towards improvement, understanding, awareness and cooperation in fisheries/aquaculture in the Asia-Pacific region.

Simon Funge-Smith, Secretary of APFIC and Senior Fisheries Officer at the Food and Agriculture Organization Regional Office for Asia Pacific said, “By joining the Asia Pacific Fishery Commission Timor Leste will be able to draw on the knowledge and experiences of APFIC members to help better manage its fishery resources and to further the implementation of the FAO Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries. At the same time, I am confident that all APFIC members will benefit from the full and active contribution Timor Leste will make to the Commission’s activities, particularly in the area of regional cooperation.”

In recent years, APFIC has covered a range of regional fisheries issues, including co-management of fisheries; low value/trash fish; illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU) and fishing capacity management; certification in fisheries (e.g. ecolabeling) and aquaculture; promotion of the ecosystem approach to fisheries and aquaculture as well as improving resilience of fishery livelihoods. APFIC member countries also take part in several large regional projects supported by the Global Environment Facility, which cover aspects of improved fishery and marine environmental management.

The Asia and the Pacific region is the most important region of fish production in the world through its capture fisheries and aquaculture. Capture fisheries production in Asia and the Pacific region reached 48.3 million tonnes in 2008, which contributed to 51 percent of global capture production. In 2008, Asia and the Pacific region produced 46.6 million tonnes of aquaculture products (total aquaculture production excluding aquatic plants), representing 89 percent of global aquaculture production. Overall, Asia and the Pacific region currently contribute some 65 percent of the world fisheries production (aquatic plants excluded).

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