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  1. Mission
  2. Area of competence
  3. Species and stocks coverage
  4. Legal framework
  5. Languages
  6. Members
  7. Structure
  8. Publications
  9. Contact
MissionObjectiveThe purpose of the Committee is to promote the sustainable utilization of the living marine resources within its area of competence by the proper management and development of the fisheries and fishing operations. Functions

To this end, the Committee has the following functions and responsibilities:

  • to keep under review the state of the resources within its area of competence and of the industries based on them;
  • to promote, encourage and coordinate research in the area related to the living resources thereof and to draw up programmes required for this purpose and to organize such research as may appear necessary;
  • to promote the collection, interchange, dissemination and analysis or study of statistical, biological, environmental and socio-economic data and other marine fishery information;
  • to establish the scientific basis for regulatory measures leading to the conservation and management of marine fishery resources, to formulate such measures through subsidiary bodies, as required, to make appropriate recommendations for the adoption and implementation of these measures and to provide advice for the adoption of regulatory measures by Member Governments, subregional or regional organizations, as appropriate;
  • to provide advice on monitoring control and surveillance, especially as regards issues of a subregional and regional nature;
  • to encourage, recommend and coordinate training in the priority areas of the Committee;
  • to promote and encourage the utilization of the most appropriate fishing craft, gear and techniques;
  • to promote liaison among and with competent institutions within the sea area served by the Committee and to propose and keep under review working arrangements with other international organizations which have related objectives within that area.
Area of competence

The area of the Committee is defined as all the waters of the Atlantic bounded by a line drawn as follows: from a point on the high water mark on the African coast at Cape Spartel (lat. 35°47’N, long. 5°55’W) following the high water mark along the African coast to a point at Ponta de Moita Seca (lat. 6°07’S, long. 12°16’E) along a rhumb line in a northwesterly direction to a point on 6° south latitude and 12° east longitude, thence due west along 6° south latitude to 20° west longitude, thence due north to the Equator, thence due west to 30° west longitude, thence due north to 5° north longitude, thence due west to 40° west longitude, thence due north to 36° north longitude, thence due east to 6° west longitude, thence along a rhumb line in a southeasterly direction to the original point a Cape Spartel.

CECAF area of competence - High seas, National waters
The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on this map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of FAO concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers and boundaries. Dashed lines on maps represent approximate border lines for which there may not yet be full agreement.
Species and stocks coverageThe Committee covers all living marine resources within its area of competence. Legal frameworkThe Fishery Committee for the Eastern Central Atlantic (CECAF) was established in 1967, by Resolution 1/48 adopted by the FAO Council at its Forty-eighth Session held in Rome under Article VI (2) of the FAO Constitution.
Its statutes, particularly the description of the purpose, functions and responsibilities of the Committee, were last amended in October 2003:
LanguagesEnglish, French, Spanish

English and French are the working languages of the Committee, with Spanish interpretation provided at the sessions.

Members The Committee is composed of Member Nations and Associate Members of the Organization selected by the Director-General. Such Member Nations and Associate Members of the Organization are selected from among Member Nations and Associate Members of the Organization in Africa whose territory borders the Atlantic Ocean from Cape Spartel to the mouth of the Congo River, and such other Member Nations and Associate Members fishing or carrying out research in the sea area concerned or having some other interest in the fisheries thereof, whose contribution to the work of the Committee the Director-General deems to be essential.

Current membership: Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Cabo Verde, Dem. Rep. of the Congo, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Cuba, Equatorial Guinea, European Union, France, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Greece, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Liberia, Mauritania, Morocco, Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Poland, Romania, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Spain, Togo, United States of America.


The Committee, which is composed of all CECAF member States, is the central body in CECAF. Sessions of the Committee are normally held every two years. Decisions of the Committee are taken by a majority of the votes cast, unless otherwise provided. Each member has one vote.

The Committee also established a Scientific Sub-Committee in 1998. The main function of the Scientific Sub-Committee is to provide appropriate advice to the Committee for fisheries managing decisions.


Cecaf Series

(Note: lists include bilingual documents)


(Note: lists include bilingual documents)




Merete Tandstad

Fishery Resources Officer

Marine and Inland Fisheries Branch (FIRF)
Fisheries and Aquaculture Department

Telephone: +39 06 0657052019

Email: Merete.Tandstad

Web site: http://www.fao.org/cecaf/en/

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