Programme for the Implementation of a Regional Fisheries Strategy for the Eastern and Southern Africa - Indian Ocean Region (IOC-SmartFish)
SmartFish is a regional fisheries project managed by the Indian Ocean Commission, funded by the European Union and co-implemented by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. SmartFish, which operates in twenty countries throughout the Indian Ocean Region, Southern and Eastern Africa, focuses on fisheries governance, management, monitoring control and surveillance, trade, and food security.
About the programme
The programme is implemented by the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC) in collaboration with the Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA), the East Africa Community (EAC) and the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD). Other regional institutions involved include the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and regional fisheries management organizations, such as the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC), the Southwest Indian Ocean Fisheries Commission (SWIOFC), the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization (LVFO), and the Lake Tanganyika Authority (LTA).
Fisheries are one of the most significant renewable resources that Eastern-Southern Africa and Indian Ocean Region (ESA-IO) countries have for food security, livelihoods and economic growth based on sustainable resources management plans and there is significant potential for value-added production. As populations in these countries continue to grow, the future benefits that these resources can provide will require balancing the increasing demands on fisheries, with the capacity of oceanic, coastal and freshwater fish stocks to sustain those harvests.
The SmartFish Programme aims at contributing to an increased level of social, economic and environmental development and deeper regional integration in the ESA-IO through improved capacities for the sustainable exploitation of fisheries resources.
The program’s beneficiary countries include Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Though they don't benefit from 10th EDF ESA-IO funds, Mozambique and South Africa are involved as members of SADC and through the Inter-Regional Coordination Committee (IRCC) framework. Réunion Island (France) is also participating as a member of the IOC; although not as a financial beneficiary.
Fisheries Management and Food Security
A Programme Management Unit has been established to assist with the implementation of the project and is based in IOC Headquarters in Mauritius. FAO is co-implementing the SmartFish Programme on matters related to fisheries development and management and to food security
An Action Plan is prepared for fisheries management and development for the ESA-IO region. The potential contribution of fisheries in the ESA-IO region is much higher than is currently realized.
This component of the Programme addresses, inter alia, the following issues:
These issues are addressed in general terms as well as through specific applications, e.g. for specific fisheries and inland water bodies.
An action plan for fish and fish products, food security, and nutrition is developed and fisheries and aquaculture are integrated within overall food security strategies.
The programme aims at establishing a planned process for achieving food security. The following four dimensions of food security are addressed:
The Programme assists with integrating fisheries and aquaculture into national and regional food security action plans. It also assists with the implementation of selected actions identified as especially relevant and which, inter alia, relate to:
Click here to search documents published by the FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department
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