Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Russia & SA's Fisheries Statement of Intent

On 27 March, the South African Minister of Fisheries confirmed that she had a signed a "statement of intent" with the Russian Government during the 5th BRICS Summit held in South Africa.

According to the Ministry, the statement of intent was "signed for the conclusion of a future agreement on cooperation in the field of fisheries based on conservation and rational use of living marine resources, prevention, deterrence and elimination of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, exchange of information and data on the fisheries-related issues, which are of interest to both parties, cooperation in matters concerning the activities of the international fisheries organisations, fisheries research and development of scientific programs, aquaculture development, education and training of specialists to meet the needs of the fishing industry, development of joint projects in fisheries, processing and marketing of fish products." (sic)

This is indeed quite a laundry list of broad and rather vague intentions. It is not immediately apparent how realistic any of these intentions are but if the South African fishing industry is able to access the fast-growing Russian seafood market, then this statement of intent will be an important development for the SA fishing industry which requires market diversification, particularly for its hake and tunas. 

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