AARDO chief: African, Indian fisheries to play a major role in food security
African and Indian fisheries have a major role to play in ensuring global food security, the secretary general of the African Asian Rural Development Organization (AARDO) told participants in a 15-day international workshop in March in Kochi, Kerala, India, that focused on food security, agriculture, and fisheries.
AARDO is an autonomous inter-governmental organization with 33 member-states from Africa and Asia. The group is “devoted to developing understanding among members for better appreciation of each others' problems and to explore, collectively, opportunities for coordination of efforts for promoting welfare and eradication of thirst, hunger, illiteracy, disease and poverty amongst rural people.”
The workshop was organized by the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) to train researchers and officials from 13 member countries of the AARDO, including representatives from Taiwan, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Sudan, Tunisia, Malaysia, Malawi, Libya, Mauritius, and Bangladesh.
Speaking at the event, AARDO Secretary General Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin said continuing development of fisheries and aquaculture sectors can play a major role in generating more plentiful and nutritious food, as well as better incomes and livelihoods for hundreds of millions of people in Africa and Asia. Agriculture and allied sectors, including fisheries, are the backbone of the economies of most of the African and Asian countries and will remain so in coming years, he said.
India’s Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) Director A Gopalakrishnan also spoke at the workshop. His organization is committed developing technological advances to increase marine fish production in India, including open-sea cage farming and better fish stock assessments, he said. That research will be shared with AARDO member countries in the mutual interest of improving peoples’ lives and welfare, he said.
During the 15-day workshop, participants were provided training in areas including marine fisheries development, fish stock estimation, assessment of the impact of climate change on fisheries, training in responsible marine development, and mariculture.
Photo courtesy of AARDO