A workshop to establish and operationalize the Platform of African Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to address food and nutrition security through fisheries and aquaculture development was held from 8-10 August 2022 in Seychelles. The intention of the activity is consistent with the Malabo Declaration that calls for action on the transformation of African agriculture by 2025. The meeting objectives were to: (i) identify appropriate and effective approaches to increase the capacities of AU - SIDS - in terms of international negotiations and formulation of a mechanism to coordinate African SIDS common positions; and (ii) Identify specific issues relevant to African Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and Seychelles.
The participants in the workshop included representatives of the African Union Member States (AU MS) from the African SIDS, namely Seychelles, Mauritius, Comoros, Cape Verde, Sao Tome & Principe, and Seychelles; Experts; Development Partners as well as relevant members of staff of the AU-IBAR and AUDA-NEPAD.
SIDs have a high level of inherent vulnerability related to external factors as they tend to be small, remote, exposed to environmental challenges, rising oceans and have a narrow resource base. They are, therefore, among the world’s focus in terms of sustainable development. Their vulnerability has increased due to climate change and was most recently demonstrated by the global financial crisis, the food and fuel crises and the large-scale natural disasters. Many SIDS are heavily dependent on their oceanic and fisheries resources for economic development, government revenue, food security and livelihoods and are vulnerable to any change in the status of these resources. The future potential for economic growth and government revenue within the fisheries sector is dominated by harvesting oceanic fish, particularly tuna.
Above picture: Tuna Factory Facility Tour
Fisheries are the mainstays of food security and the wealth of most SIDS. For many SIDS in Africa, promoting fisheries and aquaculture development for food security is crucial, and the need to integrate processes and share knowledge and experience on best practices. It is within this context that the meeting was held. During the workshop, practical intervention areas to increase the capacities of African SIDS, including Seychelles, were identified in terms of international negotiations and a mechanism to coordinate AU-SIDS common positions was formulated. The issues relevant to African SIDS and Seychelles were also identified and synthesized.
The initiative is being implemented under the FishGov 2, funded by the European Union.
Watch news coverage: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Epn4pJoF9U0
Aired on Seychelles Broadcasting TV channel on the 09.08 (at min 10)