In February 2011 the Committee on Fisheries (COFI) of FAO decided to proceed with the formulation of a set of Voluntary Guidelines on Small-scale Fishery (VG-SSF). These guidelines would be international in scope and would be developed with the participation of civil society groups at a national and international level.

Due to our affiliation to the World Forum of Fisher People (WFFP), Masifundise was approached by the civil society coordinating committee to organize and host a national workshop in South Africa of representatives of small-scale fishing communities and other relevant stakeholders. The purpose of this workshop would be to obtain their contributions to the development of these guidelines. It will further be an opportunity for government officials and civil society stakeholders to share views on the proposed VG-SSF.

The workshop is expected to address:

  • The nature and character of small-scale fisheries in South Africa
  • Small-scale fisheries practices like how small-scale fisheries is recognized in national law, policies and programmes in relation to fisheries development, conservation and management, preferential rights, human development, etc
  • Compile key recommendations for inclusion in the Voluntary Guidelines

The workshop will be held from 14 to 16th February 2012.  The first two days is aimed at obtaining contributions from fishing communities themselves and the following day the workshop will open to representatives from government (national and provincial) and other civil society stakeholders.

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