104. The Secretariat introduced document COFI/2005/9 and made reference to COFI/2005/Inf.6.
105. The Committee commended FAO for the improvements made in the presentation of the Medium Term Plan and Preliminary Programme of Work Proposals for 2006 - 2007. Some Members found that improvements were required in the formulation of the objectives and that funding for priority areas should be more easily identified in the budget document.
106. The Committee appreciated efforts made by FAO to accommodate most priority areas into the Programme of Work and Budget for 2006 - 2007. Many Members underlined that additional allotments should be made to this Major Programme 2.3 Fisheries, from which the Department could allocate more budgetary resources to the prioritized areas including aquaculture. Many Members requested that the costs related to aquaculture should be kept in a separate budget line, apart from inland fisheries. It was also suggested that funds for meetings should be allocated, whenever possible, from the Regular Programme.
107. Some Members expressed the wish that these allocations be made under a real growth scenario. Other Members stressed that zero growth scenarios were necessary because of their restricted national budgets and extrabudgetary resources should be sought as an alternative solution. The Committee acknowledged that the Programme of Work and Budget of the Organization would be discussed at subsequent sessions of the Governing Bodies. FAO was encouraged to continue its efforts to be efficient, effective and accountable.
108. The Committee noted that all activities of the Fisheries Department were too important not to be undertaken. Many Members requested further strengthening of the following specific issues:
(a) Implementation of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries and its related IPOAs and assistance related to them.
(b) Elaboration of policy guidelines to support sustainable management including guidelines relating to bioeconomic modelling and the development, implementation, evaluation and adjustment of management policies.
(c) Activities and assistance on capacity building of developing nations for small-scale fisheries.
(d) Aquaculture, especially in developing countries.
(e) Enhancement of the effectiveness of RFMOs.
(f) Implementation of the Strategy-STF and related assistance programme including for statistical collection.
(g) Deep-sea fisheries.
109. Several Members recommended strongly that a post for an Aquaculture Officer should be established in the FAO Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean even under the zero nominal growth scenario to assist Members in aquaculture activities in the region.
110. It was pointed out by the Secretariat that most of the work related to the Indian Ocean tsunamis was expected to be undertaken by extrabudgetary resources.