The FCWC Secretary-General (SG) Dr. Gaston Djihinto led a delegation to pay a courtesy visit to the Director General (DG) of Liberia’s National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority (NaFAA), Hon. Emma Glassco, on 26 April 2023 at the NaFAA Headquarters in Monrovia, Liberia, to strengthen regional cooperation between the two entities.
Participants in the meeting included NaFAA Deputy Director-General, William Boeh, and TMT Regional Coordinator, Viviane Koutob, where the SG officially informed the DG of his assumption of duty as the new FCWC SG and thanked the Director General for her support.
Further discussions followed on the status of Liberia’s cooperation with the FCWC Secretariat and other Member States. At the 14th Conference of Ministers held in Accra, Ghana on 11-13 January 2023, Liberia was selected as the venue for the 15th Conference of Ministers. A discussion was held to iron out the details of the collaboration to organise this year’s meeting, and DG Glassco pledged Liberia’s support to ensure its success.
A discussion was also held on MCS efforts including the holding of a joint patrol between Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire (tentatively in July 2023), and the ongoing integration of Liberia’s VMS into the Regional VMS. Fisheries management measures, particularly the closed season being implemented by Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire between July and September 2023 for both the artisanal and industrial sectors, and how to expand it to include Liberia were also discussed.
The Director General confirmed that following the workshop on international instruments to improve working conditions in fisheries held in September 2021, Liberia remains in the process of ratification of the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) C188 and the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) 2012 Cape Town Agreement (CTA). SG Djihinto praised the reforms NaFAA has implemented to restore responsible fisheries and said FCWC would lend its efforts to support such measures to ensure the lifting of the European Union yellow card.