May 2017 — Per Erik Bergh (Managing Director) and Mark Ssemakula (Project Officer) participated in the fourth West Africa Task Force (WATF) meeting, held on the 25th and 26th of May, in Lagos.
The Task Force meeting was attended by all the FCWC Member States, Benin, Côte D’Ivoire, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria and Togo, as well as observers representing the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Monitoring for Environment and Security in Africa (MESA) and the WorldFish Centre.
Discussing the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Port State Measures Agreement (PSMA), Mr Bergh encouraged countries to tackle the operational challenges faced in their ports, and to implement aspects of the PSMA in order to improve the effectiveness of their enforcement efforts, stating that “Port State controls offer a vital means of stopping illegally caught fish entering the supply chain. We encourage and support all WATF members to adopt and implement the Port State Measures Agreement as a matter of priority.”
The Task Force Meeting marked the end of the first phase of the WATF initiative, and members reflected on the challenges and successes of the first phase and future priorities.