Welcome to FAN-27 Dear Reader,

Welcome to FAN-27. This is the first issue of the year 2001. Beginning with this issue, FAN will be published twice a year, in July and in December. Although we have reduced the number of issues per year from three to two, we have increased the number of pages substantially, so that you may even receive more information than before. FAN will continue to publish in its usual format as a printed Newsletter in English, however, from this issue you will have the opportunity to enjoy reading a web-based version of FAN in all FAO official languages - Arabic, Chinese, English, French and Spanish. This is in keeping with FAOís efforts to provide information to all our member governments and clients in there official and preferred languages. Please visit our website at http://www.fao.org/fi/newslet/newslet.asp to view and download FAN-27 in any of the FAO official languages.

Perhaps you may be aware that the FAO Council, which met in July this year, approved the recommendation made by the Committee on Fisheries (COFI) on establishing a Sub-Committee on Aquaculture (SCA). This is the second Sub-Committee of COFI, the first being the Sub Committee on Fish Trade. Establishment of COFI/SCA is a major milestone in our efforts to assist the development of sustainable aquaculture throughout the world. The first meeting of the COFI/SCA will be held in Beijing, China P.R., in April 2002. Delegates from our member states, relevant NGO and private-sector representatives, and other interested stakeholders will meet in Beijing to discuss the issues on global aquaculture and to decide on courses of action for sustainable development and management of the sector. Keep an eye on our website - http://www.fao.org/fi/. - for further information.

We are happy to announce the addition of several new faces to the FAO Fisheries Department. Dr. Simon Funge-Smith, a British national, was appointed as the Regional Aquaculture Officer at the FAO Regional Office for Asia Pacific (RAP) in early July of this year. A profile of Dr. Funge-Smith is given in this issue. We also have appointed two new aquaculture officers to the Inland Water and Aquaculture Service (FIRI): Drs. Jose Aguilar-Manjarrez, a national of Mexico, and Dr. Alessandro Lovatelli, a national of Italy. While Dr. Aguilar-Manjares will work on Inland Fisheries and Geographical Information Systems (GIS), Dr. Lovatelli will extend his expertise for coastal and marine aquaculture development. Their profiles will be published in the next issue of FAN.

Thatís all from us. Sit back, relax and enjoy reading FAN-27.

The Editorial Board