Jamaica has formalized a major multi-agency effort to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and transnational organized crime in fishing.
The “Blue Justice Initiative” was launched on Wednesday, with several government agencies signing contracts to support sustainable development of the fisheries sector through close cooperation.
“This is big news for Jamaica. This is the collective, comprehensive approach that must be taken to meet all challenges of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries,” said Minister Parnell Charles Jr.
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He noted that the fisheries sector represented the greatest opportunity for growth in the ministry, but recent estimates put Jamaica at up to $200 million in losses from IUU fishing and a highly lucrative conch and lobster trade. He pointed out that it has been shown that it has suffered a large loss from
Through the international Blue Justice Initiative, developing countries will implement the Copenhagen Declaration signed by Jamaica in October 2021 to promote a “sustainable and just blue economy free of fishing crime for all”. to support
Additionally, at a technical conference held earlier this year, CARICOM member states agreed to accept the Norwegian government’s offer of technical assistance under the Blue Justice Initiative facilitated by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Blue Resilience Project. .
As such, the National Fisheries Service is now part of the Blue Justice community, giving key government officials access to the knowledge, connections and support they need to support government efforts to combat fishing crime. .
This includes access to learning videos and key resources on aspects of fishing crime. Peer-to-peer interaction from experts around the world with the establishment of a secure communication environment and ship tracking assistance from the Norwegian International Ship Tracking Center run by the Norwegian Fisheries Authority and the Norwegian Coastal Authority.
Minister Charles also welcomed the proposal for Jamaica to become a regional hub for the Blue Justice Initiative.
“[This] A hub with the necessary human, financial and technical resources will undoubtedly create a platform for more effective deterrence mechanisms against the scourge of IUU and related crimes in the region.
He reassured his counterparts in Norway’s Blue Justice Initiative that the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries remains committed to combating IUU fishing.