GAROWE, Puntland —Recently, the Puntland Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources along with Shuraako and Secure Fisheries, programs of One Earth Future (OEF), an NGO focused on creating a more peaceful world, hosted the first-of-its-kind Somalia Fisheries Forum in Garowe, Puntland, Somalia.
In a strong spirit of cooperation, the fisheries ministers from each of the Somali Regional Member States and the Deputy Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources from the Federal Government of Somalia agreed to strengthen the Somali fisheries sector in the following ways:
- We agree to end illegal fishing.
- We agree to issue offshore fishing licenses for the benefit of the Somali people.
- The federal and regional ministers agree to meet quarterly to build the fishing sector.
- We agree to build education around marine sciences and fisheries.
- We agree to pursue future projects that have a long-term skills development orientation.
- We agree to support institutional capacity-building.
- We agree to make the Somali Fisheries Forum an annual event.
These seven points outline a road map for developing fisheries management and community involvement to strengthen the fisheries supply chain, grow the local economy, and provide for a sustainable, secure food supply for Somali communities.
“Sustainable fishing practices are the key to global food and economic security,” said Kaija Hurlburt, Secure Fisheries director. “For this reason, we must work together across the region to effectively manage seafood harvesting, end overfishing, and combat illegal and destructive fishing practices.”
Puntland President Abdiweli Mohamed Ali Gaas, Somalia’s Deputy Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, and the Regional Member State Ministers of Fisheries were featured speakers at the forum, which drew more than 600 attendees to the opening session. Hundreds participated in breakout sessions focusing on advancing knowledge of Somali fisheries, implementing fisheries management, increasing consumer demand, expanding production and processing, and financing fishing companies.
“We are very pleased with the level of participation and engagement by all sectors of the fisheries industry at our inaugural forum,” said Mahad Awale, Somalia country director for Shuraako. “This was the largest event hosted by the private sector in Somalia. We had very productive discussions which will lead to a more sustainable fishing sector that will promote jobs, growth, and stability for current and future generations of Somali fishers.”
About One Earth Future:
OEF is a self-funded, private operating foundation seeking to create a more peaceful world through collaborative, data-driven initiatives. We focus on enhancingmaritime cooperation, creating sustainable jobs in fragile economies and our research actively contributes to thought leadership on global issues.
About Secure Fisheries:
Secure Fisheries is a program of One Earth Future and combines science-based research with a policy-oriented approach to build sustainable fishing practices, improve food and economic security, and combat illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU).
Shuraako is a program of One Earth Future which operates throughout Somalia. Shuraako, which means “partnership” in Somali, connects micro, small and medium sized enterprises with investors to create jobs and stimulate economic growth, contributing to a more resilient and peaceful Somalia.