The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is reaching out directly to the Chinese public in a bid to turn opinion against illegal fishing.
The FAO recently launched a social media campaign on Chinese social media in Mandarin, aimed at popular platforms including microblogging site Weibo. The campaign calls for locals to “fight against illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing” and also calls for the protection of fisheries to guarantee food security around the world.
The campaign is a new effort to inform the Chinese public of the impact of illegal fishing on the high seas – some of it conducted by Chinese vessels. The FAO's campaign is an interesting contrast with state media, which tends to portray the development of China's distant-water fleet as a strategic national priority.
Other posts in the FAO's anti-IUU campaign on Weibo highlight the impact of overfishing on marine life and point out the dangers of abandoned fishing gear to marine life.
The FAO’s Weibo channel urges immediate action in tackling IUU fishing due to the anticipated growth in the world’s population in Africa and Asia, much of which is dependent on seafood for protein needs.