29 April to 2 May 2008
1. The SEAFDEC Regional Technical Consultation (RTC) on Small-Scale Fisheries in Southeast Asia was organized from 29 April to 2 May 2008 in Bangkok, Thailand. The Consultation was attended by representatives from Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam as well as the SEAFDEC Secretary-General and Deputy Secretary-General, advisors and officials from the SEAFDEC Secretariat and Departments. The Consultation was also attended by representatives from the ASEAN Secretariat, Food and Agriculture Organization Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific (FAO/RAP), and Mekong River Commission (MRC). The Consultation Prospectus appears as Annex 1 and the List of Participants appears as Annex 2.
18. The Consultation was informed on the activities undertaken by SEAFDEC to promote the implementation of the Regional Guidelines on Co-management Using Group User Right for Small-scale Fisheries, particularly in Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam.
19. The Consultation also took note that in 2008, the SEAFDEC Training Department (TD) plans to implement the project on the “Promotion of Rights-based Fisheries and Co-management towards Institutional Building and Participatory Mechanism for Coastal Fisheries Management” (Annex 23) with support from the Japanese Trust Fund. The Consultation supported the implementation of the Project due to its close linkages with the Southeast Asian Coordinated Positions on Small-scale Fisheries as agreed at this Consultation, and the Project could be viewed as a follow-up program to support the implementation of the Coordinated Positions in ensuring sustainable development of small-scale fisheries in the region.
20. While taking note of the Training Workshop on Co-management, Rights-based Fisheries for Small-scale Fisheries at the National Level (Annex 24) to be organized under a cost-sharing scheme, the representative from Thailand indicated their interest in conducting the Training Workshop in 2008 subject to the approval of the Department of Fisheries. While subsequently expressing interests to conduct the Training Workshop, the representatives from Brunei Darussalam and Indonesia informed the Consultation that the exact timing for the conduct of such Workshop in their respective countries would be confirmed with SEAFDEC subject to the approval by their governments.
21. The Consultation also noted the proposed Regional Training Course on Co-management Using Group User Rights for Promoting Coastal Fisheries Management (Annex 25), to be organized tentatively from 17 to 28 November 2008 with support from the Japanese Trust Fund. While recommending the need of improving the course curriculum, the Consultation suggested that the experiences of Japan in the implementation of co-management should be included, and that the Course should allocate more time for the field study. In this regard, the Consultation requested TD to reduce the number of days for lectures and increase the number of days for the field study. Additionally, the Consultation also requested that henceforth, the Training Course should be conducted regularly.
VII. OTHER MATTERS
7.1 Promotion of Inland Small-scale Fisheries Management through Rights-based Fisheries and Co-management towards Institutional Building and Participatory Approaches
22. The Consultation was informed that SEAFDEC would implement the project on the “Promotion of Inland Small-scale Fisheries Management through Rights-based Fisheries and Co-management towards Institutional Building and Participatory Approaches” (Annex 26) from 2008 to 2011 with support from the Japanese contribution under a cost sharing scheme. The program aims to promote the adoption and implementation of rights-based fisheries and co-management to improve inland fisheries management in order to alleviate poverty in the communities. The Consultation also took note of the supplementary information on Experience and Lessons Learned from Thailand on Co-management for Reservoir/Lake Fisheries (Annex 27) which is closely related to the Project.
23. While agreeing that it is easier to identify fishers’ groups in reservoirs than in river basins, the Consultation suggested that the Project at its initial stage could focus on reservoirs and lakes, and at the later stage expand to river basins. The Consultation also requested SEAFDEC to consider implementing activities on management and conservation of inland habitat, with the involvement of fisheries agencies as well as other stakeholders. The Consultation also noted that setting up and strengthening of local institutions/organizations is among the important factors in order to sustain management initiatives.
24. Recognizing that there have been many activities supporting co-management for inland and coastal small-scale fisheries involving various donors and organizations, the Consultation suggested that SEAFDEC should play a coordinating role and consider organizing a regional workshop to share the experiences and lessons learned from the Member Countries from all such projects, and further develop recommendations for the promotion of inland small-scale fisheries co-management in the region. The Workshop should also involve relevant stakeholders as well as countries outside SEAFDEC. In this regard, SEAFDEC was requested to try to source funding support for the organization of the workshop, e.g. from non-traditional sources of funds.
25. While supporting the organization of the Workshop, the representative from MRC shared the experiences of MRC in the implementation of co-management in the lower Mekong River Basin, of which the initiatives and experiences in inland fisheries co-management could be shared during the proposed workshop.
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