The AGD-MAVA foundation, small pelagic project within the sub-region has recently held a three-day workshop on the use of Automatic Identification System (AIS) and Vessels Monitoring System (VMS) to improve information on small pelagic fisheries.
The objective of the AGD-MAVA project is to provide support for the sustainable management of small pelagic populations in the Sub-regional fisheries commission area.
The project is now being implemented mainly in Guinea Bissau, Mauritania, Senegal and The Gambia.
Deputy permanent secretary of ministry of fisheries and water resources, Omar S.M Gibba, said the goal of the fisheries sector as enshrined in the National Development Plans is to promote a vibrant fisheries and aquaculture sector through research, sustainable management and utilization of the fisheries resources that would boost employment and livelihood opportunities.
He said the sustainable management and utilization of small pelagic fisheries resources is an integral part of the country's food and nutrition security. "Fish provides 50 percent of the protein source to the Gambian population," he said
Mr. Gibba said small pelagic such as Ethamalosafimbriata, sardinellas (Sardinellaaurita and S. maderensis), and Scombercolias, make up 75% of the fish landing in the country and they are the base of artisanal and industrial fishing, essential to the population's nutrition security.
Dr. Diop Mika from the Sub-regional Fisheries Commission (SFRC), said the training will help the participants to improve data collection on pelagic fisheries and boosts their understanding of AIS in fisheries, in monitoring and control surveillance
Jérôme Michelet, former navy and regional director/ transparency programme Africa and Europe said Global Fishing Watch is there to promote ocean sustainability and revolutionizing the ability to monitor the global commercial fishing fleet, offering near real-time tracking of fishing activity via their public map.