FORCE FINAL CONFRENCE AND STAKEHOLDER MEETING
19th MARCH 2014
GOVERNENCE INITIATIVES AND FUTURE ORIENTATION
FOR FISHERIES AND AQUACULTURE
CASE OF EGYPT
Dr. AHMED BARRANIA
Fisheries & aquaculture Economist
Institute of National Planning (INP)
• Governance in fisheries and aquaculture is usually understood as the sum of the legal, social, economic and political arrangements used to manage fisheries and fish farming. It has international, national and local dimensions. It includes legally binding rules, such as national legislation or international treaties as well as customary social arrangements.
• The term governance is widely used nowadays to cover institutions, instruments and processes ranging from short term operational management to long term policy development and planning and from conventional forms of administration to modern forms of participative decision-making processes.
FISHERIES AND AQUACULTURE GOVERNANCE IN EGYPT
• Fisheries and aquaculture represent considerable economic resources in Egypt. They are an important source of national and community food security and employment. They produce about 1.372 million tons of different fish species (GAFRD, 2012) worth about LE. 17.7 billion, approximately 6.7 of agriculture GDP. Considering both harvest and post-harvest activities it is estimated to employ about two million people. The total investments in fishing fleets and fish farms with their related activities (feed and seed production) are estimated at about LE. 11.5 billion.
• These benefits are now severely threatened by ineffective fisheries and aquaculture governance resulting in fisheries being over-exploited and beyond biologically sustainable limits while aquaculture potentialities are not fully exploited.
These mainly due to:
• The policy and institutional environment in which the management of fisheries and aquaculture operates is highly complex. It involves numerous government ministries, governorates, and a multitude of laws and decrees. These create difficulties in achieving coordination within this complex setting.
• The lack of coordination has created contradictory laws and policies.
• Inability of current management approaches to meet the multiple needs of the resource users within a transparent and participatory decision-making process.
• Lack of an institutional framework to ensure that management proceeds through an integrated approach.
• The General Authority for Fish Resources Development (GAFRD) was established in 1983 to develop the fish resources, it often does not participate in decision making on basic policy impacting water bodies.This mainly due to the fact that central ministries tend to make policy decisions regarding the water bodies with a view toward achieving their own objectives within their particular sector.
• Relaxation in enforcing fishery and environmental laws and regulations is a critical problem.Enforcement is most often performed by national coast guards and police of water bodies- as part of other patrol duties- rather than the fisheries management agency, as a result, fisheries are not often seen as a focus of attention.
• In general, local fishing and farming cooperatives have little political power. Most are under-funded and poorly coordinated among themselves. These make their lobbying power largely ineffective.
• There is no legal definition of aquaculture.
• In most cases aquaculture is not considered in both water and land uses policies.
• The fisheries and aquaculture sectors lack transparency. Significant and important information on a range of aspects are not available or of insufficient quality.
• A proper system of accountability is not available. The performance of most related authorities both national and regional – including governorates – is not officially reviewed.
• To overcome the above mentioned constraints, and to enable Egyptian fisheries and aquaculture to contribute sustainably to economic growth, food security, nutrition, employment and healthy ecosystems.Governance Reform is needed urgently. It offers the opportunity for significant change in the way Egypt’s fish resources are exploited.
• The fundamental principles of good governance (accountability, transparency and participation) should underpin policy development.
• Achieving effective governance reform requires taking the following actions:
Upgrading existing laws and regulations for the fisheries and aquaculture.States should take effective actions consistent with international laws and Code of Conduct for responsible Fishing to monitor and control fishing activities to ensure compliance with applicable conservation and management rules.
Enforcing fishery and environment laws and regulations.
Solving the conflicting requirements and interests of governmental entities and improve transparency of authorization process.
Moving away from the current situation where government sectors and stakeholders do not interact with each other to a situation where a forum is available for discussing, coordinating, and harmonizing existing and future policies.
Strengthening local fishermen farmer’s cooperatives in coordination with Cooperatives Union.