On behalf of the World Forum of Fisher People, the World Forum of Fish Harvesters and Fish Workers, the International Collective in Support of Fishworkers and the International Planning Committee for Food Sovereignty we would like to commend Governments and the FAO for bringing the world’s attention to importance of small scale fisheries. Since the adoption of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries in 1985, the FAO and its member states have made significant strides invalorizing the contribution small scale fisheries make to livelihoods, social and economic development, food security and poverty eradication.
We are also pleased to note that the role of small scale fishery organizations, both as development actors and partners in policy and decision taking is being given increasing recognition. Our presence here reflects that.
In this regard, we would like to highlight our active engagement over the last 6 years in the FAO led process to develop international guidelines for securing sustainable small scale fisheries. Since 2008, thanks to the active participation of members of this platform together with the FAO and its member states, over 4000 small scale fisheries stakeholders from both inland and marine fisheries from all over the world have been directly involved in the process.
We believe that given the relevance of such an instrument,it will finally be endorsed by this 31st session of COFI thereby giving states a tool to enhance the contribution of SSF to food and livelihood security and to an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable future for the planet and its people.0