Fisheries: FAO Wants Pro-Poor Criteria For Designing Policies In Developing Nations
Port Harcourt, Nigeria
The improvement of the livelihoods of coastal communities and the sustainability of the fishery resources on which they
depend require increased attention, strong commitment and collective efforts, according to Ichiro Nomura, Assistant
Director-General, Fisheries and Aquaculture Department of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
When designing policies and strategies for small-scale fisheries management in developing countries, pro-poor criteria
and principles need to be used, he added.
Nomura was delivering the Keynote Address at the Inaugural Session of the Workshop on "Asserting Rights, Defining
Responsibilities: Perspectives from Small-scale Fishing Communities on Coastal and Fisheries Management in Asia"
organized by the International Collective in Support of Fishworkers (ICSF) at Siem Reap, Cambodia.
If management of single-species fisheries in Northern and sub-tropical waters is considered difficult, the task is even
more daunting for the multi-species and multi-gear fisheries of the tropics, he said.
Pointing to the growing trend towards more decentralization in fisheries management and the success of co-management
systems in some areas, Nomura said that the topic of allocation of access and benefits is at the heart of all efforts to
Small-scale fishers should be given preferential access to fishery resources, Nomura added. "As a pro-poor policy, a
redistribution of access from the industrial fleets to small-scale fishers should be considered. This should be combined
with improved protection of inshore areas, some of which have already been made exclusive to artisanal fisheries", he
The goal of responsible and equitable small-scale fisheries calls for a combination of decentralization of management
responsibilities; a rights-based approach to fisheries management that meets social objectives; and strong support to
social development and poverty alleviation, Nomura concluded.
The three-day workshop for fishworker and non-governmental organizations , researchers and activists from the Asian
region, which began today, will be followed by a two-day symposium to which policymakers and representatives of regional
and international organizations have been invited.
Around 60 participants from Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand
and Vietnam are attending the workshop and symposium.