Social Protection for Fisheries and Aquaculture (SocPro4Fish)

SocPro4Fish Updates| Brasilia Workshop


Enhancing Collaboration and Learning 

Workshop on Social Protection for the Fisheries and Aquaculture Sector

The workshop, centered on advancing social protection in the fisheries and aquaculture sector, provided a unique platform for countries to engage in a South-South cooperation exchange. Over the course of four days, participants from Paraguay, Colombia, Tunisia, Chile, Peru, Brazil and Cabo Verde, including fishers, along with representatives from prominent international organizations including the International Labour Organization (ILO),  International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF), International Union of Food, Agricultural, Hotel, Restaurant, Catering, Tobacco and Allied Workers' Associations (IUF), and the International Collective in Support of Fishworkers (ICSF)s convened to exchange ideas, innovative strategies, and valuable experiences in the formulation and execution of social protection programs. 

Brazil's 30 Years of Expertise  

Unemployment Insurance for Small-scale Fishers, also known as the “Seguro-Defeso” 

The first part of the workshop featured an in-depth exchange between Brazil and fellow members of the "Social Protection for the Fisheries and Aquaculture Project" (SocPro4Fish), namely Colombia, Paraguay, and Tunisia. Brazil shared its rich 30-year experience implementing unemployment insurance during fishing closures (Seguro Defeso), which aims to provide financial compensation of up to 5 months during the fishing closed season for the lost income, and in this sense, smooth fishers’ consumption and enable compliance with conservation measures, ensuring economic stability during periods of non-employment. The aim was to inspire and inform similar processes undertaken by Colombia, Paraguay, and Tunisia, fostering mutual learning and collaboration. Read more about it  

A Broad Platform for Global Engagement 

Sharing Experiences 

The second part of the workshop broadened the scope, allowing countries within and beyond the SocPro4Fish project to discuss and showcase their social protection programs in the fisheries sector. The presentations and discussions delved into various dimensions, such as the delivery cycle of programs to fishers, social registries and their interoperability with fisher registries, revolving funds, community initiatives, alternative livelihood programs, and productive inclusion strategies during closed seasons. 

Interactive Working Groups and Fisher Perspectives 

Let’s talk about social protection 

Working groups explored the coherence between existing fisheries management and social development policies, emphasizing the role of registries in expanding social protection coverage to the fisheries sector. Additionally, a panel of fisher representatives from each country provided firsthand perspectives on challenges, vulnerabilities, and well-being needs, offering valuable insights into the realities on the ground. In addition, they proposed solutions to the challenges they are facing.  


During the workshop, several recommendations were put forward. A key proposal was the development of a guide to promote gender equality in social protection programs, tailored to the fisheries and aquaculture sector. Improving poverty measurement in fisheries through the development of improved data and indicators was also highlighted, as well as technical assistance to countries to improve their national fisheries registers and integrate them into broader social information systems. 
In addition, there were suggestions for research topics, particularly on exploring the impact of social protection on the sustainability of fisheries. The need for national-level support for effective implementation was also emphasized. Overall, the workshop encouraged ongoing collaboration for knowledge sharing, with a particular focus on gender equality, including the integration of gender-sensitive approaches in social protection strategies.  Furthermore, countries requested aid to support unemployment programmes during the fishing closed season.