Transforming Mediterranean small-scale fisheries

Transforming Mediterranean small-scale fisheries

Current fishing policies are decided centrally and make no distinction between industrial and small-scale fisheries. They have failed to address the unique situation of the Mediterranean where the majority of the fleet is run by small-scale fishers. An alternative approach was fundamental. WWF responded to a bottom-up request for change by working closely with fishers, administrators and scientists to build a system of co-management in which all actors could decide together how to best use their fish resources to maintain healthy stocks as well as wealthy communities.

On 26 September, Mediterranean countries signed the Regional Plan of Action on Small Scale Fisheries at a High-Level Meeting in Malta. This meeting was organized by GFCM-FAO with the support of the EU Commission, the Maltese Government and WWF. This innovative plan of action aims to manage small-scale fisheries and develop comprehensive ecological, economic and social sustainability for the entire Mediterranean basin over the next 10 years. During this High-Level Meeting key issues that dominated the discussion between fishers, WWF, scientists and high-level officials were co-management, gear selectivity, spatial and temporal closures, participation, alternative economic solutions, gender equality, tradition and innovation, conservation of stocks and ecosystems.

WWF will follow closely how the Regional Plan will be implemented and how it will lead to better outcomes in terms of healthy stocks.

Read the WWF Mediterranean Marine Initiative Bulletin October 2018

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