Mauritania hosts launch of initiative to curb overfishing worldwide

Feb 09, 2016 Mauritania recently launched a new Fisheries Transparency Initiative in a bid to tackle unregulated, unreported fishing activities. The initiative will also seek to curb over-fishing all around the world, with Indonesia and Senegal also announcing their commitment to the initiative.

Mauritania, which has some of the world’s richest fishing grounds, depends heavily on its fisheries for jobs, food, and nutrition.

However overfishing, ecosystem damage, and climate change has continued to threaten Mauritanian.

With foreign fishing fleets taking enormous quantities of fish and using methods that often destroy the ecosystem, artisanal fishermen are left to feel the brute.

Barro Diop, a fisher man commented on the situation saying:

“There are big boats coming here to the sea. Big trawlers which destroy the sea grass. And the seagrass these trawlers destroy is where the fish lives. If this grass disappears, then the fish, too, will disappear,”

According the World Wildlife Fund, the amount of fish in the oceans has halved since 1970.

The problem of overfishing has been compounded by damage to coral reefs and mangroves, which are nurseries for many fish.

Diop went on to say that the future of fisheries is of paramount importance.

“There will be generations and generations to come. We want our children and grandchildren to find more fish. We want them to live better than us,” 

Speaking at the inauguration of the initiative, Mauritania’s president Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz said:

“Good governance constitutes an unavoidable route for Africa to exit the blatant paradox of being a continent rich in resources while numerous citizen still suffer a precarious existence,” 

Also speaking at the conference, Peter Eigen, founder of Transparency International said:

“I witnessed it with my groups and I’ve seen it with my own eyes how this combination of wisdom, strengths and objectivity, this magical triangle of governments, civil society and the private sector, can really achieve tremendous improvements.”

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