FAO in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea

FAO builds support for DPR Korea forestry, fisheries sectors


Pyongyang, DPR Korea – The FAO Representative for DPR Korea Mr. Percy Wachata Misika told Ministry of Fisheries of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea that FAO, in consultation with the donor, is working on project proposals in support of DPRK Korea's fisheries and forestry sectors.

Mr. Misika said that while the formulation of the forestry project document was at an advanced stage, for the aquaculture project the first step would be for international fisheries experts to visit DPR Korea to work with the Ministry of Fisheries to develop and formulate a project document which will be considered for funding.

"This is not the project itself. The USD 150,000 concept note is to get experts to come into the country to formulate the project. The funding envelope is not yet set at this stage, the amount will depend on the project developed by the international experts in close consultations with the DPR Korea counterparts," Mr. Misika said.

In the concept note, titled "The review on aquaculture seed material requirements in DPRK and project formulation on the establishments of production material", the type of fisheries is already identified as aquaculture in the fresh water bodies, he clarified. The experts will work with the Ministry of Fisheries to identify the aquaculture seed material needs like fish species, quantities of fingerlings and feeding materials needed.

They will also identify potential project sites in different locations. The experts will further identify the needs for training of fisheries officers and local government people, cooperatives and the farmers themselves, stated Mr. Misika.

During the implementation phase, aquaculture production facilities stocked with fingerlings and all the needed materials will be developed. This proposal will then determine how much this project will cost.

Mr. Misika said that a country like DPR Korea with its vast unpolluted water resources combined with long coastal lines should be able to utilize these resources to develop the fisheries sector. In this regard, FAO welcomes the top priority being accorded by the government of DPRK to issues of fisheries development.

He said that food security is not only about agriculture production, it is about fisheries, forestry, and livestock and income generation from non-agricultural activities.

"Any projects that would incorporate and integrate the three axes, namely, agriculture, livestock and fisheries for food security articulated by the Government of DPR Korea, will lead to enhanced food security and socio-economic development of the country, he underlined.

Misika concluded by reiterating that FAO will be very much pleased to work with the fisheries ministry in addressing these issues and urged the Ministry to ensure the speedy review and endorsement of the concept note, to enable FAO proceed with the project formulation phase.

This means developing the whole fisheries value chain from ensuring water bodies have conducive ecological environment for enhanced fisheries production to production of fingerlings, harvesting, processing and packaging were necessary," Mr. Misika told the Vice Minister of fisheries Mr. Song Chun Sop.

He noted that that in many development efforts, once the areas of focus are identified, there is a need to develop the policies and strategies that can be used as systematical frameworks for interventions in those focus areas and assured that FAO is willing to work with DPRK government to develop a fisheries development policy and fisheries development strategy.

Mr. Song Chun Sop, Vice Minister of Ministry of Fisheries of DPR Korea said his ministry is devoted to the development of fisheries of the country. He said that under the wise leadership of President Kim Jong Un, the issues of fisheries and fish farmers are being handled to make people's lives better. He said it is very important to boost fishing industry rapidly and to make trade neutral for the development of fishing industry.

"Fishers are doing the best to catch a lot of fishes and the government is doing its best to facilitate aquaculture. DPR Korea government is going into fish processing, freezing, canning, salting and producing a lot of pickles in the fish dishes. In the past days the ministry has implemented a project with FAO in 2011 which demonstrated the sustainability of the fishing industry.

However, recently no projects in this sector are in progress. FAO and DPR Korea can and should develop cooperation projects to improve fishing methods, marine culture and fish processing," Mr. Song said.

The Vice Minister thanked Mr. Misika for clarifying many issues in the concept note that were not clear to his Ministry and promised to ensure speedy review and endorsement of the concept note. He acknowledged that it is very important to develop collaboration with FAO to achieve DPRK's fishing industry development strategy in the country. He said the government is striving to have mutually beneficial cooperation relations for achieving the fisheries strategy, CPF and UNSF in DPR Korea and the MDGs.