Validation Workshop to Harmonise Liberia’s Fisheries and Aquaculture Strategies with Continental Policies

Tue, 11-06-2024 15:00:00

A Stakeholders Consultative and Validation Workshop is being organised by the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) in Monrovia, Liberia, from June 10 to 14, 2024. The objective of the workshop is to ensure that Liberia’s agricultural investment plans and fisheries and aquaculture strategies are in accordance with the Policy Framework and Reform Strategy for Fisheries and Aquaculture in Africa (PFRS). In addition, it discusses the adaptation to climate change and provides suggestions for the domestication of pertinent global instruments. 

On behalf of Dr. Huyam Salih, Director of AU-IBAR, Rafik Nouaili expressed his profound gratitude for the participants' dedication to the socio-economic advancement of Africa's fisheries and aquaculture. He recognised the substantial contributions of a variety of stakeholders, such as the University of Liberia, Private Sector Organisations, NGOs, and the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority. The significance of aligning national fisheries and aquaculture policies with the PFRS and pertinent international instruments was emphasised by Nouaili. The National Consultant, Dr. Austin Saye Wehye, was commended by him for his exceptional performance in reviewing and providing policy alignment recommendations. Nouaili emphasised the importance of the PFRS and the EU-funded FishGov2 initiative in assisting member states in the pursuit of Agenda 2063. He urged for continued collective efforts and sustained momentum to improve the sector's environmental sustainability, food security, and livelihoods. He concluded his speech by advocating for the continuation of regional and international collaboration in order to safeguard marine ecosystems for the benefit of future generations. 

The Hon. Minister of Agriculture was represented by Dr. Augistine Manoballah, the Deputy Director General for Administration of the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority (NaFAA), who officially convened the meeting. His emphasis was on the shared responsibility to expedite the implementation of activities to attain shared objectives at the national, regional, and continental levels. The significance of robust regional and international collaboration in the preservation and sustainability of marine ecosystems was underscored by Dr. Manoballah, who ensured that future generations would reap the rewards. 

A series of sessions designed to address climate change adaptation and align national fisheries and aquaculture strategies with the PFRS are included in the meeting agenda. Key dignitaries deliver inaugural remarks on the first day, which is followed by presentations on the PFRS and discussions on the alignment of national policies. The following days will feature breakout sessions for group work on the integration of national agricultural investment plans with climate change strategies, the domestication of global instruments, and policy alignment. In conclusion, the workshop concludes with plenary sessions that include the adoption of consultancy reports, wrap-up discussions, and the development of actionable recommendations. Reinforcing a collective commitment to sustainable development in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors, participants from a variety of sectors are collaborating to ensure the successful alignment of national strategies with continental and global frameworks. 

Various NGOs, private sector stakeholders, representatives from the European Union, FAO, the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture Sciences at the University of Liberia, and Hon. Augistine Manoballah, Deputy Director General for Administration of NaFAA and representative of the Minister of Agriculture, are among the attendees. Also present are experts that are contributing to this critical initiative. Funded by the European Union, the initiative operates within AU-IBAR's animal production unit as part of the FishGov2 Project. Its aim is to promote sustainable development and governance in Africa's fisheries and aquaculture sector.