Development, Sustainability and Social Justice: The Elusive Balancing Act of African Fisheries Governance

"The discourse on African fisheries governance is dominated by themes of unrealised potential and crisis. Undoubtedly, the threats are significant: illegal fishing and overfishing by foreign industrial vessels, as well as intense fishing pressure in the small-scale sector, have decreased stocks substantially in many coastal and inland waters. Climate change, pollution and other human impacts on the environment are also affecting ecosystem health. Fishing communities continue to be marked by poverty and underdevelopment, while resources for monitoring, surveillance and compliance activities are often wholly inadequate. This policy note outlines developments in African fisheries governance in recent decades. It identifies central policy dilemmas that will continue to inform the ongoing efforts of governance actors to strike a balance between development, sustainability and transformation in the sector."