(FSMR&D Secretary Marion Henry giving his opening remarks and Kosrae DREA Director Lyndon Cornelius looking on)
State fisheries agencies, non-government organization, and private sector representatives along with supporting regional partners across the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) convened on May 17, 2016 at an inception workshop in Kolonia, Pohnpei to share information and lessons learned on sustainable fisheries management and provide guidance on further enhancing sustainable fisheries management through its national project objectives and deliverables.
Coastal fisheries management/development agency, NGO, and private sector representatives from the States of Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei, and Yap attended the workshop facilitated by the FSM Department of Resources and Development (FSMR&D) and National Oceanic Resource Management Authority (NORMA), with support from the World Bank funding Pacific Islands Regional Oceanscape Program (PROP). This World Bank and Global Environment Facility Program is supporting 12 Pacific Island Countries to strengthen the management of Pacific Island fisheries, with technical assistance and backstopping from the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency at the regional level.
The nature and economic contribution of coastal fisheries varies significantly among the four FSM States, as also do governance and management arrangements. These involve various forms of traditional, local and state control and jurisdiction. Because of the diversity of management arrangements, an initial study building on previous studies and/or work already carried out or underway and stakeholder consultations are planned in order to develop the detailed design of the coastal fisheries component of PROP in the FSM with the national government playing a coordinating and facilitating role through FSMR&D and NORMA.
“I challenge this group with finding a balance between sustainable use and development,” R&D Secretary Marion Henry stated during his opening remarks. “This will inform our Fisheries Investment and Development Policy and actions in response to 2023.”
The workshop included panel presentations from both state government officials and NGO experts in the field in which they gave an overview on their respective management frameworks and monitoring programs, and facilitated discussions on identifying capacity issues/gaps and opportunities.
“It complements our joint efforts between Government Agencies and NGOs on community-based ecosystem approach to fisheries management with our local communities and pleased to note that this project can further expand on this,” said Marcellus Akapito, Chuuk Conservation Society Director.
“This workshop is to give momentum on our collective effort and guide the consultative process of developing our priority activities within this project,” said Okean Ehmes, PROP Project Coordinator at NORMA.