The international conference, this year entitled 'CFP: The External Dimension as a driver for change', will be held on 16th-17th September 2015 Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain.
The LDAC will lead the debate on how the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy’s focus on international fisheries can benefit global governance, transparency in African fisheries and social, economic and environmental sustainability.
More than a quarter of the fish caught by European fishing boats are actually caught outside of EU waters. Around 8% of catches (2004-2006) are made under ‘fishing agreements’ with countries outside of the EU, while another 20% are taken on the high seas, mainly in regions under the care of the regional fisheries management organisations (RFMOs).
Discussion of the ‘external dimension’ of the CFP, also known as the ‘international dimension’, pertains to these activities, outside of EU waters.
“As fishers, it is in all of our interests to see the sea managed sustainably by our counterparts overseas.
"The European industry is happy to have the chance to talk about positive changes we can contribute towards in long-distance fisheries which help provide our livelihood,” said Michel Goujon, from tuna producers' organisation Orthongel.
Delegates will examine the role that this policy can play in promoting sustainable fisheries development in African countries.
Fishing sector representatives from across the EU, Africa and long-distance fisheries worldwide are expected to meet for a range of discussions with cooperation agencies, NGOs, trade unions, and high-level national and international policy makers.
The event aims to offer in-depth panel discussion and interactive workshop sessions, exploring how the CFP External Dimension can be a driver for positive change.
Delegates will learn how they can contribute practically to implement the policy, through greater cross-sector collaboration and bottom-up involvement. Speakers from across the globe will bring concepts to life with real-life case studies of sustainable change.
Béatrice Gorez, from the Coalition for Fair Fisheries Arrangements commented: “This event will be a great opportunity to discuss how EU policies, including fisheries and development cooperation, can be made coherent, by providing an enabling environment for sustainable fisheries development in Africa, rooted in transparency and the promotion of fishing communities participation.”
The LDAC acts as the consensual voice of the European long-distance fleets and other groups of interest, advising the European Commission and Member States on questions related to external fisheries.
Speaking in anticipation of the event, LDAC Executive Secretary, Alexandre Rodriguez, remarked: “We are particularly looking forward to welcoming guests and colleagues from Africa, and sharing some of our best-practice case studies and projects focused on that region to extract lessons for the future.”
Find out more and register for the workshop here.