This month seven Coastal Fisheries officers of the Tuvalu Fisheries Department will attend the First Regional Technical Meeting on Coastal Fisheries (RTMCF) in Noumea, New Caledonia. The meeting will start on the 28th of November and run for a period of five days. The primary aim of the RTMCF is to improve coastal fisheries management and development around the region and give coastal fisheries officers a chance to share information and lessons learned with their colleagues from other Pacific countries.
The Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) will host the RTMCF meeting at its headquarters. The meeting was proposed by Tuvalu at the SPC Heads of Fisheries Meeting in March this year to provide a forum for discussion of some of the most important coastal fisheries-related concerns. This year the meeting will focus on data collection and eMonitoring, but it is hoped that the meeting becomes an annual event and that in future meetings a wide range of topics can be discussed. Importantly, this gives the coastal fisheries staff a chance to interact on a technical level, find out more about programmes in other countries and gain experience in broader aspects of fisheries, including regional and international agreements. Because this is will provide such an important learning experience for all who attend, both senior and junior officers will attend.
The participation of the 7 Coastal Fisheries Officers will help grow their capability and ability to deliver programmed outcomes under the TFD Annual Work Plan. It will also allow them to become part of what we hope will be an annual exchange within the region, helping to build up coastal fisheries capability for all countries.