FAO.org

Home > Country_collector > FAO in Liberia > News > Detail
FAO in Liberia

FAO, NaFAA Strengthen Collaboration to Improve Fisheries and Aquaculture Sector

©FAO/Liberia
14/08/2019

14 August 2019, Monrovia — A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)  for “Transboundary Resources and Ecosystem Survey” to be conducted in 2019 in the Western Gulf of Guinea was signed between the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Government of Liberia through the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority (NaFAA).

According to the MoU, the survey is to cover demersal and pelagic transboundary resources of the continental shelf and upper slope with a regional survey that allows for synoptic overview of distribution and abundance of resources that may be shared across the region.

In addition to determining distribution and abundance of demersal and pelagic species and communities, and collecting biological samples as specified below, said the MoU provides that sampling will be carried out to determine oceanographic conditions (including physical, chemical and biological), sampling for micro plastics recording occurrence of marine debris and food safety.

Signing the MoU on behalf of her institution, the FAO Representative in Liberia, Madam Mariatou Njie, said the project will assist countries situated in the Western Gulf of Guinea to survey their fisheries resources and support fisheries institutions to sustainably manage fisheries guided by the principles of an ecosystem approaches.

She added that the survey will provide a platform for benefitting countries (including Liberia) to use the information and data collected to produce reports on the state of the fishery resources; support the development of human and organizational capacity of fisheries management and research institutions among the participating countries and regional organizations to sustainably manage their fisheries resources.  

For her part, Madam Emma Glassco, Director General of NaFAA, lauded FAO for the continued support towards improving the sector. Glassco: “Conducting this survey will help us know the status of the fish stock in order to open other fishery programs that have been abandoned over the years”, she noted.

According to Madam Glassco, the collaboration will enable the NaFAA to obtain up-to-date and accurate data that will inform their program interventions. “With this information, we will improve our revenue intake through the development of a national quota plan”, she added. She described the support as “timely” adding that the NaFAA currently lacks the financial capacity to conduct such research.  

Why Do We Conduct Fish Stock Assessments

Stock assessments are key to fisheries management. They examine the effects of fishing and other factors to describe the past and current status of a fish stock, answer questions about the size of a fish stock, and make predictions about how a fish stock will respond to current and future management measures. Fish stock assessments support sustainable fisheries by providing fisheries managers with the information necessary to make informed decisions.

Why Are Fish Stock Assessments Important for Liberia?

Fisheries in Liberia contribute significantly to the national economy, which according to NaFAA, accounts for an estimated 40,000 people employed directly or indirectly in the sector. Furthermore, NaFAA believes that more than 50% of protein requirements in the Liberian diet comes from fish. To continue enjoying these benefits, we must carefully manage fish stocks to ensure sustainable use for current and future generations. Stock assessments provide important science information necessary for the conservation and management of fish stocks.