The Fisheries Committee for the West Central Gulf of Guinea (FCWC) and the fisheries sector ministries of Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana met in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire as part of a two-day working visit by Ghana’s Minister from 3-4 August 2022, to strengthen bilateral fisheries cooperation in the Fisheries Committee for the West Central Gulf of Guinea (FCWC) region.
FCWC Secretary-General, Seraphin Dedi facilitated the meeting between Ghana’s Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Hon. Mrs. Mavis Hawa Koomson and Côte d’Ivoire’s Minister for Animal and Fisheries Resources, Hon. Tiemoko Side Toure to discuss the operationalization of important protocols that will enable a regional approach to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, to fight piracy, and to implement fisheries management measures.
Key outcomes of the meeting include: a commitment by Côte d’Ivoire to implement a fishery closed season in 2023 concurrent with Ghana; to propose a joint fisheries surveillance patrol operation with Ghana before 2023; to participate in the regional observers programme when it is operational; to reactivate joint scientific fisheries research and stock assessment; and to strengthen the exchange of data for monitoring fishing vessels.
The FCWC is the regional fisheries body established to facilitate cooperation in fisheries between its six Member States – Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria, and Togo.
FCWC Secretary-General Mr. Dedi commented, “this visit by Ghana’s Minister Hon. Koomson, to the current FCWC Chairperson of the Conference of Ministers, Hon. Toure, to discuss regional approaches, is a clear indication of the level of high commitment of both governments to deepen existing fisheries cooperation and to advance national efforts to a regional level to secure our fisheries and maritime domains.” The proposed actions will produce more effective monitoring of fisheries activities, better fisheries management, greater maritime domain awareness and deeper insight into the shared marine fish stock.