From 2nd to 4th August 2017, the beautiful city of Abuja in the Federal Republic of Nigeria hosted a Think Tank Meeting on Intra-regional Fish Trade in Africa in the context of the Africa's Agriculture Growth and Transformation Agenda. The meeting was organized by the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) in collaboration with the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA) and WorldFish with support from the European Union (EU).
The overall objective of this meeting was to present the research and development findings and outputs by studies under the Fisheries Governance and Fish Trade Projects and to identify policy entry points that will enhance intra-regional trade of fish and fish products for improved and significant contributions to the Malabo goals of tripling regional trade by 2025. The specific objectives included:
- Assess the status of the regional fish trade in Africa and its contribution to food and nutrition security.
- Assess the institutional and policy environment hindering intra-African fish trade.
- Share experiences (best practices, knowledge and lessons learnt) on regional fish trade.
- Identify priority policy entry points and develop action plans for various national and regional stakeholders to strengthen their roles in facilitating inter and intra-regional fish trade in the continent.
The workshop was attended by 57 participants. These include experts in charge of trade matters and Directors of Fisheries of AU MS; consultants and experts from the continent; Regional Economic Communities, Regional Fisheries Bodies and the private sector. The following countries were represented Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, DR Congo, Egypt, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, and Uganda. Regional Institutions and Organizations included IGAD, EAC, and LVFO. WorldFish, NEPAD and AU-IBAR were also represented.
A consultative workshop for establishment of a continental network for women fish processors and traders organized by the African Union Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) in collaboration with the NEPAD Agency (NPCA), WorldFish and the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania was held from 20th to 22nd April 2017, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
The main objective of the workshop was to establish a continental network of women fish processors and traders that would facilitate (i) collaboration and cooperation between women fish processor and trader associations in the continent, (ii) sharing of best practices, experiences, technologies and learning together, (iii) advocate for issues affecting their activities and facilitate enabling policy environment to enhance their role in the fisheries sector in the continent, (iv) attract increased public & private investment in fish post-harvest activities (fish processing and trading), (v) strengthen their role as Small Medium and Enterprises (SMEs) and hence expand their market and marketing opportunities, resulting in improved intra-regional African fish trade.
Kampala, Uganda. 9 – 11 November 2016. A Training of Trainers (ToT) workshop for trade amongst private sector associations, in particular of women fish processors and traders on fish handling, hygiene and Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures along the post-harvest value chain was organised by African Union Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) in partnership with NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA) and WorldFish with support from the European Union and collaboration with the Government of Uganda. The training was held from 9th to 11th November 2016 in Kampala, Uganda.
The objectives of the training workshop were to (1) Develop the capacity of women association on hygiene and implementation of SPS measure for production and handling of safe and quality fish products; (2) Identify institutional constraints that are bottlenecks to quality assured production and access of fish products to lucrative markets; (3) Networking, sharing of experience and best practices on post-harvest activities between associations from different regions in the continent.
The training workshop was attended by 37 participants mainly women representatives of fish processor and trader associations from the following African Union Member States: Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Uganda, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Tanzania, the Gambia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe; a representative of MOSFA (Media Observatory for Sustainable Fishing in Africa) and staff from AU-IBAR.
The opening ceremony of the workshop was marked by statement by Dr. Simplice Nouala Representing the Director of AU-IBAR. The official opening of the training workshop was by Hon. Minister of State for Animal Industry the Republic of Uganda, Mrs. Joy Kabatsi. She acknowledged the importance of fish and fishery products for food and nutrition security as well as livelihood and economic development of many women and families in Africa. She emphasized the importance of ensuring the fish is healthy and safe for human consumption, and attracts good price from buyers. The Hon. Minister encouraged participants to effectively take advantage of the training of trainers by learning and transfer the skills and empower other women in their associations or communities; and the effect of value addition through improved processing facilities.