"the establishment of the Chinese fishmeal factory will contribute to decreasing the supply of fish for local consumption."
In reaction to the news that 250 hectares of rainforest and beach have been sold to build an industrial fishing harbour on Black Johnson beach in Sierra Leone, Dr Aliou Ba, Greenpeace Africa Political Advisor, said:
"The planned investments in Sierra Leone will not benefit the country but rather the Chinese, with the consequences of destroying Sierra Leone's fisheries. While most of the fish stocks in West Africa are already in a state of overexploitation, the Chinese distant water fleet will worsen this critical situation."
We have observed in recent years an increasing presence of Chinese distant water fleets in the West African coasts despite their reputation for ruining and polluting everything in the waters. Besides, their practices of Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing and tonnage fraud strongly contribute to destroying fish stocks and the impoverishment of local communities.
"Apart from the pollution it will cause, the establishment of this fishmeal factory will contribute to decreasing the supply of fish for local consumption, which will lead to food insecurity," added Dr Ba.
In Mauritania, Senegal and The Gambia, we have already seen the negative impact of fishmeal factories and foreign industrial fishing on the local population and fish stocks.
Greenpeace Africa demands foreign partners, distant water fishing fleets, and local governments ensure sustainable fishing practices. Sierra Leonean and Chinese partners must avoid investment in polluting and destructive industries like fishmeal factories.
Media and Communication Consultant, Greenpeace Africa,
Dr Aliou Ba
Political Advisor, Greenpeace Africa,