KINGSTOWN, St Vincent — Under a Euro 30 million project funded by the European Union (EU) for projects to improve sustainable and equitable management of fisheries and aquaculture in Africa Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) states, fisheries officials from CARIFORUM states are receiving training in the use of modern, cutting-edge, information and communication technology tools in their daily activities.
“The enhanced use of these modern communication and information sharing tools, such as video-conferencing, social networking, tools for online collaborative document preparation and editing, can result in significant cost savings, increased productivity and outputs, as well as boost the earnings and income of fishers, and improve competitiveness and profitability within the fisheries and aquaculture sector,” said Milton Haughton, executive director, of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) Secretariat, at the launch of a three-day regional training on information and knowledge sharing on sustainable fisheries management in the Caribbean.
Haughton described the regional training workshop, which opened on Monday and runs through to Wednesday, as “another significant milestone in our journey to transform the fisheries and aquaculture sector, and enhance its contribution to national economic development.”
He said that organizers are providing practical training which they hope will improve capacities and lead to greater integration of information and communication technology tools in all areas of the work of fisheries departments and other fisheries organisations in the region.
“We intend to do a much better job of communicating with each other, informing ourselves, forging a common vision and being more united in what we do, based on wide participation of stakeholders and the public at large,” Haughton added. “This is why the development and implementation of this communication strategy and enhanced use of ICT is so important at this time.”
The 6th Meeting of the CRFM Ministerial Council held in The Bahamas, June 2012, urged the CRFM Secretariat to strengthen the use of information and communications technology (ICT) to improve the sharing of information and the effectiveness and efficiency in its work.
PBLH International Consulting SPRL of Brussels, Belgium, is executing the contract to deliver this knowledge sharing project in the Caribbean.
According to Haughton, this week’s training is the second and final regional fisheries workshop on this subject of information and knowledge sharing and enhanced communication among stakeholders in the fisheries sector.
It builds consensus on the goals and targets for the IT component of the CRFM’s new Communication Strategy which was reviewed and updated this January.
Representatives from the CRFM Secretariat and eleven CARIFORUM states are participating in the training workshop: Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago.