The trade in fish and fish products among African countries is becoming increasingly important for the region’s food security and economic development. Africa’s regional economic communities (RECs) and the African Union’s New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) Agency have therefore prioritized the strengthening of regional trade and have identified fish and fish products as key commodities for investment and policy support. Despite the potential of intra-regional fish trade in addressing the region’s food and nutrition insecurity, as well as poverty reduction through wealth creation, this type of trade is often overlooked and neglected in national and regional policy. Hence, the implementation of this project will enhance the capacities of Africa Union regional and pan-African organizations to support their member states (MS) to better integrate intra-regional fish trade into their development and food security policy agendas.
The primary entry points at the member state levels are the ministries or departments responsible for fisheries and aquaculture, national research and academic institutions and the private sector, and relevant institutions having a stake in fish trade, etc. Based on the common recognition that partnerships and alliances between the public, private and civil society are critical factors for success and sustainability in development, the project implementation strategy at member states level and at regional level, will entail enhancing the role of public and private sector in decision making with regard to promoting intra-African trade in safe fish through provision of appropriate background information.
To ensure strategic and cost-effective implementation of project activities, the project will ensure close partnership with partners within the African Fisheries Reform Mechanism (AFRM) including RECs who are in charge of the regional integration agenda of the African Union and RFB/RFMOs who are the primary organizational mechanism through which states work together to ensure the long-term sustainability of shared fishery resources in order to minimize duplication and promote strategic use of available resources.