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Strategic Plan For The Development Of The

Fish & Fish Processing Industry In Trinidad & Tobago


Final Draft

20th September, 2005

Acknowledgements
The Fish and Fish Processing Industry Team acknowledges the assistance of the Fisheries
Division, CFTDI and the Advisor on Fisheries (THA), as well as, the industry stakeholders
whose ideas, comments and depth of experience guided the overall strategic planning process.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Acknowledgements.......................................................................................................................... i
Table Of Contents ........................................................................................................................... ii
Executive Summary ........................................................................................................................ 1
SECTION ONE
1.1
1.2
1.2.1
1.2.2
1.3

Introduction......................................................................................................................... 5
Terms Of Reference............................................................................................................ 8
Objective Of The Assignment ............................................................................................ 8
Scope Of Work ................................................................................................................... 8
Report Structure ................................................................................................................ 10

SECTION TWO
A Framework For The Development Of The Fisheries Sector
2.1
Introduction....................................................................................................................... 11
2.2
Key Elements In The Promotion Of A Sustainable Fishing Industry............................... 11
2.2.1 The Foundations Of A Sustainable Fishing Industry........................................................ 12
2.2.1.1 Sustainable Fisheries Resources ....................................................................................... 12
2.2.1.2 An Economically Competitive Industry ........................................................................... 14
2.2.1.3 A Rural / Coastal Development Agenda........................................................................... 16
2.2.1.4 An Integrated Approach To Coastal & Marine Areas Management ................................ 18
2.2.1.5 An Inclusive Approach To Management Of The Fisheries Sector................................... 20
SECTION THREE
Environmental Scan
3.1
3.1.1
3.1.2
3.1.3
3.2
3.2.1
3.2.2

Recent International Developments.................................................................................. 24


Global Trends In Production, Utilization & Trade ........................................................... 24
Developments In Fisheries Management.......................................................................... 27
Developments In The Global Fishing Industry................................................................. 25
A Review Of The Regional Fisheries Industry................................................................. 30
Regional Trends In Production, Utilization And Trade.................................................... 30
Challenges Common To The Region................................................................................ 32

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3.2.3 The Regional Approach To Fisheries Management ........................................................ 35


3.3
International Best Practice Used In Development Of The Industry ................................. 36
3.3.1 Case Study ........................................................................................................................ 37
3.3.1.1 THE FISHERIES SECTOR OF NEW ZEALAND.......................................................... 37
SECTION FOUR
The Fisheries Sector of Trinidad and Tobago
4.1
The Current State Of The Industry ................................................................................... 45
4.1.1 Fish Production, Utilization & Trade................................................................................ 45
4.1.2 Structure Of The Sector .................................................................................................... 46
4.1.2.1 Harvesting Component ..................................................................................................... 46
4.1.2.2 Suppliers & Service Industries.......................................................................................... 49
4.1.2.3 Processing Component...................................................................................................... 49
4.1.2.4 Retail Component & International Trade ......................................................................... 50
4.1.2.5 Aquaculture....................................................................................................................... 51
4.2
Recent Developments In The Industry ............................................................................. 55
4.3
An Analysis Of Key Problem ........................................................................................... 59
4.4
Outlook For The Future Of The Fisheries Sector ............................................................. 66
SECTION FIVE
A Strategic Plan For The Fishing Industry
5.1
5.1.1
5.1.2
5.1.3
5.1.4
5.2
5.3
5.4
5.5

The Vision......................................................................................................................... 71
A Modern Fisheries Sector ............................................................................................... 71
A Profitable Fishing Industry............................................................................................ 72
Sustainability Of The Resources....................................................................................... 72
An Environmentally Mindful Industry ............................................................................. 73
The Values ........................................................................................................................ 73
Swot Analysis ................................................................................................................... 73
Strategic Goals .................................................................................................................. 77
Strategic Initiatives ........................................................................................................... 79

SECTION SIX
Implementation of the Plan
6.1

Project Implementation Matrix ......................................................................................... 80

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SECTION SEVEN
Implementation of the Plan
7.1

A structure for implementing the strategic plan ............................................................... 89

APPENDIX ONE
Status of the Resources ................................................................................................................. 93
APPENDIX TWO
Strategic Actions Table................................................................................................................. 97
APPENDIX THREE
Results Of Stakeholder Meetings................................................................................................ 100
APPENDIX FOUR
Process Undertaken in implementing the strategic plan ............................................................. 106
APPENDIX FIVE
Draft Terms of Reference for FIDC............................................................................................ 107
CHARTS
Proposed structure for the implementation of the plan................................................................. 90
FIGURES
Figure 1: World Capture Fisheries Production (FAO State of World Fisheries, 2002) ............... 25
Figure 2: Trends in World Aquaculture Production (SOFIA Report, 2002) ............................... 25
Figure 3: FishServes relationship with industry organisations and government agencies .......... 43
Figure 4: Map of fish landing sites in Trinidad ............................................................................ 47
Figure 5: Map of fish landing sites in Tobago.............................................................................. 48
Figure 6: Throughput of Fish Production (Mt) for 1999/2000 (from Kuruvilla et al, 2002)........ 54

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TABLES
Table 1: Growth of Fishing Industry in terms of employment and export earnings..................... 37
Table 2: Value of Domestic Fish Sales In New Zealand ($million)............................................. 39
Table 3: Sales volume and employment for the Fisheries Sub-Sectors (from Kuruvilla et
al, 2002) ............................................................................................................................ 52
Table 4: Future Scenarios for the Fisheries Sector ....................................................................... 67

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

In April 2004, the Government of Trinidad & Tobago under the auspices of the Prime Ministers
Standing Committee on Business Development created an Industry Team comprising
stakeholders from both the private and public sectors, to draft a Strategic Plan for the
development of the Fish & Fish Processing Industry.

In conducting this exercise, the Team reviewed strategic plans from a range of countries with
well-developed fishing industries, as well as reports and studies on the fishing industry of
Trinidad and Tobago. In addition to commissioning its own review of the status of the fisheries
resources under national jurisdiction, the Team also conducted interviews and consultations with
industry stakeholders both in Trinidad and in Tobago, and employed the services of a strategic
planning consultant and a fisheries consultant to assist with the exercise.

This countrys fishing industry has been in existence for almost one hundred years, yet today it is
an industry where opportunities and future prospects appear to be declining. Several factors may
be responsible, however, the situation has been compounded by the relative lack of interest in the
sector by successive Governments, and the lack of planning and limited resources invested in
tackling the problems plaguing the industry.

The fisheries are multi-species in nature with the majority of harvesters being artisanal or smallscale operators. There is a small fleet of industrial and semi-industrial inshore shrimp trawlers,
and an emerging fleet of semi-industrial vessels, which target pelagic species in the offshore
areas. Support infrastructure is generally inadequate for the inshore fleet, and non-existent for the
emerging offshore fleet.

Economic data for 2000 suggest that the industry contributes 9 % of agricultural GDP
and 0.2% of national GDP. Total direct employment in the sector averages 6,000 persons with
total landings estimated at 14,000 metric tons, and exports averaging TT$62 m. Recent reports
from stakeholders however, suggest that the industry is experiencing major shortfalls in

production that have affected supply to processing plants, many of which are operating at less
than full capacity, while exporters are faced with increasing prices locally and progressively
smaller export shipments.

A well-established fish processing sector, a lucrative tourismlinked and recreational or game


fishing sector, with promising offshore resources suggest that there exists potential for focused
development within the industry. In addition, the inshore resource that has been the mainstay of
the industry in the past can still be a supplier to the local and regional market, however
sustainable management of the resource is a necessary condition for this to occur.

There are however, key challenges that constrain the further development of the industry. These
include:

The absence of a national policy to guide development of, and investment in the sector;

An inshore resource in which most of the commercially important species are overexploited;

Fisheries legislation, which is outdated. The Fisheries Act (1916) is clearly inadequate to
manage the fisheries, which have evolved considerably over time;

A regulatory framework, which is outmoded, with almost no capacity for monitoring,


enforcement and surveillance, and with, limited capability for the necessary economic
and performance analyses to support development planning;

Landing site infrastructure inadequate to the needs of the inshore fleets and, the lack of
suitable port facilities catering to the needs of offshore vessels;

Market and related facilities which are sub-standard and in urgent need of overhaul and
upgrade;

A general inability to meet modern food safety standards in fish handling limiting or
prohibiting access to foreign markets, particularly in the case of the European Union;

The absence of a unified private sector or national stakeholder body to effectively


represent the needs of the sector;

The absence of a social policy for coastal fishing communities, particularly with respect
to alternative or new job opportunities.

An analysis of strategies employed in the development of successful fishing industries or


operations both internationally and regionally indicated, that key elements of best practice
included:

The employment of strategies to attain sustainable fishery resources;

The creation of an economically competitive industry;

An inclusive or collaborative approach to management of the sector;

A rural/coastal development agenda;

An integrated approach to coastal and marine areas management;

Based on these and other findings, the Team determined that the ultimate objective of a national
strategic plan must be the emergence of a modern, profitable, sustainable and environmentally
mindful fish and fish processing industry. It has determined further, that this vision can be
achieved through the implementation of the following strategic interventions:

Establishment of a national policy for the fisheries sector;

Achievement of sustainable utilization and management of the fish resources, through


the updating of fisheries legislation and the development and application of a national
fisheries resource management plan;

Development of a profitable and commercially viable industry, by upgrading or


constructing new infrastructure at strategic locations, providing incentives and support
for the development of the offshore fishery, providing increased and improved training
in HACCP and quality assurance standards, developing market intelligence capability,
encouraging and supporting new and value added product development, supporting
initiatives for developing the game fishing and the aquaculture sub-sectors;

Modernization of the governance framework of the sector through the creation of a lead
agency to spearhead business development initiatives, strengthening the human resource
capability within fisheries related agencies (particularly in project management,
3

economic analysis, marketing and information dissemination), and the creation of a


unified private sector representative body with a voice in the governance process;

Empowering coastal fishing communities through programmes for skills development in


harvesting, handling, processing and value adding, small enterprise management, and
alternative employment opportunities, while encouraging and supporting innovative
business development activities, improving safety and security at sea and onshore, and
improving the general standard of living and overall quality of life.

The Team recognizes that achieving the objectives outlined, though challenging, are not
insurmountable, providing that the political will exists to make available the resources required.
Clearly, private sector stakeholders must buy into the exercise and give their full support for
there to be meaningful and productive outcomes.

Recognizing that no capability exists for carrying out the business development aspects of the
plan, a final recommendation is made for the establishment of a Fishing Industry Development
Committee, preferably housed and operating within a Fishing Industry Development Company,
not only to oversee the implementation of the business development projects outlined, but also
to guide long term business development within the sector. It is further recommended that the
Committee, comprise representation from both the private and public sectors with majority
representation and leadership (Chairman) coming from the private sector.

SECTION

ONE
1.1

Introduction

One of the greatest challenges that Trinidad and Tobago will face over the next decade will be
the diversification of the economy away from the energy sector. To this end, the Government of
Trinidad and Tobago has established a Standing Committee on Business Development (SCBD)
to spearhead the development of selected industries in the non-petroleum sector. One of the
industries targeted for development is the fish and fish processing industry. A team comprising
key stakeholders in the public and private sector was assembled to carry out a review of options
for the development of a sustainable fishing industry and to draft a strategic plan for the fisheries
sector for the short and medium and long term.
The fishing industry and the resources on which it is based, are viewed as part of the wider
agricultural sector of Trinidad and Tobago, and management and development of this subsector has traditionally been a minor addition to the responsibilities of the agencies managing
the agricultural sector. As a sector, the relative contribution of agriculture to Gross Domestic
Product (GDP) over the period 1996 to 2002 averaged 3.3% per annum. The contribution of
fisheries to agricultural GDP declined from 11.1% in 1995 to 8.1% in 2001 and the export of fish
and fish preparations also showed a decline over this period 1 .

VISION 2020
The 2020 VISION 2 for the agricultural sector is one of a competitive sector with the capacity to
sustain competitiveness by becoming resilient, adaptive, technology and market-driven. It will
provide for sustainable livelihoods in the rural sector and the Food and Nutrition Security needs
of the Nation. In pursuance of the vision, seven broad developmental objectives have been
identified. These are as follows:
Vision for Agriculture, 2004
1
The 2020 Vision for Agriculture, 2004

1. To improve the efficiency and competitiveness of the sector.


1
2

From the 2020 Vision for Agriculture, 2004


The 2020 Vision for Agriculture, 2004

2. To contribute to food and nutrition security on a sustained basis by increasing selfsufficiency in strategic foods.
3. To achieve and sustain a quality of life in rural communities comparable to the larger
society, commensurate with their social, cultural, economic and political aspiration.
4. To contribute to the conservation of the natural environment and promote and maintain
its integrity.
5. To recognize and promote the multifunctional contribution of agriculture to societal wellbeing.
6. To promote holistic development of rural communities throughout Trinidad and Tobago.
7. To contribute to the socio-economic development of rural communities through
exploitation of indigenous knowledge particularly herbal/medicinal application,
knowledge, skills and positive attitudes.
The vulnerability of Trinidad and Tobago in terms of food security has also been emphasized
and this is reflected in a high dependence on imports, exceeding 50% for numerous commodities.
In 2003, the country imported approximately TT$2.1 billion worth of food and related products
for human and livestock consumption. The 2020 VISION Food Security Strategy has identified
strategic food groups and quantities that the country should aim to produce so as to provide the
Nation with its minimum nutritional requirements in the event of a disruption in supply from
imported sources. The proposed targets for the contribution of fish to protein requirements
are 40% of domestic demand for marine fisheries and 40% for aquaculture.
In a specific reference to fisheries, the 2020 VISION report refers to the low priority that marine
fisheries development has always been accorded and recognizes the importance of fish and fish
products to the nutritional status of the country. A number of basic requirements have been
identified as pre-requisites for development, the key issue being the need for a
comprehensive master plan to chart a developmental agenda for the sector.
The report identifies the following constraints to the development of marine fisheries and
aquaculture:

MARINE FISHERIES ISSUES


No master plan for development
Inadequate resources to ensure compliance
Inadequacy of marketing system
Outdated legislation
Inability to enforce provisions with respect to over exploitation of coastal resources

MARINE FISHERIES ISSUES


High cost and inadequacy of funds to upgrade landing sites
Lack of systems to generate market intelligence data

AQUACULTURE ISSUES
Absence of a master plan for development
Limited programmes for research and development
Absence of strategies for identification and access to export markets
Inadequacy of resources for sub-sector development
Upgrading skills and new training in specific species production
No procedures for systematic identification of suitable land
Need for upgrading and modification of marketing infrastructure

ADMINISTRATION OF THE FISHERIES SECTOR


The Fisheries Sector comes under the overall administration of the Fisheries Division of the
Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Marine Resources, except for the island of Tobago and those
areas extending six nautical miles seaward from the baselines of Tobago which are administered
by the Department of Marine Affairs and Fisheries of the Tobago House of Assembly.
The (Draft) Strategic Plan of the Fisheries Division 3 for 2002 2005 set as its goals:
i)
ii)
iii)
iv)
v)

Sustainable management of the fisheries resources


Optimal utilization of the fisheries resources to enhance social and economic
benefits to the fisheries sector
Development of Institutional capabilities within the Fisheries Division
Development of partnerships in fisheries management between the Fisheries
Division and stakeholders
Diversification of income and diet through alternative means of fish production.

The Tobago House of Assembly 2002 Technical Agenda for Marine Affairs and Fisheries 4
identified the following goals for the period 2002 2005:

3
4

Fisheries Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Marine Resources, 2002


Agriculture, Marine Affairs and the Environment, Tobago House of Assembly, 2002

i)

ii)
iii)
iv)
v)
1.2

Facilitate access to local, regional and international markets for fish and fish
products by upgrading existing fishing facilities to meet international quality
assurance standards including HACCP and European Union standards
Provide support to the fishing industry in terms of research and development and
fisheries management.
Control coastal erosion pertinent to the possibility of sea level rise as a result of
global warming
Conserve and restore the coral reef ecosystems of Tobago
Regulate and manage diving and water sport activities in Tobago

Terms Of Reference

This report sets out the findings of a review of the fishing industry of Trinidad and Tobago, set
within the context of regional and global developments in marine fisheries. The report was
produced as a result of a strategic planning exercise carried out by members of the fish and fish
processing industry team and aims to promote strategies for the effective management and
development of the fishing industry.
1.2.1

OBJECTIVE OF THE ASSIGNMENT

The key objective of the industry team was to draft a strategic plan for the development of the
fish and fish processing industry over the short, medium and long-term.
1.2.2

SCOPE OF WORK

A mandate was given to the members of the fish and fish processing team to prepare a Strategic
Plan for the development of the fishing industry over for the next three to five years, and an
indicative path for implementation of the Plan. Strategic recommendations were based on:

A review of global and regional marine fisheries and aquaculture

A review of the fishing industry of Trinidad and Tobago and the current status of
the marine resources

An examination of approaches to fisheries management and development in other


tropical fisheries

Analysis of the current issues/ key challenges facing the industry

Consultation with public and private sector stakeholders in the industry

A process of strategic thinking

The Strategic Plan follows a prescribed format and includes the following components:

A background analysis of the sector, which includes:

A review of past studies on the development of the fish and fish


processing industry both internationally and locally;

The development of an outlook for the industry:

International

Domestic

An identification of international best practice used in the development of


the industry;

An examination of the case of Trinidad and Tobago to identify:

Strengths

Weaknesses Key challenges

Opportunities

Threats

Development of a business/strategic plan for the industry.

Develop a vision for the industry;

Identify and analyze key problems;

Set objectives;

Develop strategies to overcome problems, achieve objectives and the


overall vision;

Design an implementation schedule for the project;

Establish key indictors for monitoring and review of the process;

Identify sources of funding for the implementation of the


recommendations.

Given the nature of the project, collaboration and consultation with key stakeholders in the
industry is essential, the groups to include fishers and vessel owners, companies operating in the
industry as processors, retailers and exporters, and government officials with responsibility for
development of the sector.

1.3

Report Structure

Executive Summary
Section 1

Introduction & Terms Of Reference

Section 2

A Framework For The Development Of The Fisheries Sector


Key Elements In The Promotion Of A Sustainable Fishing Industry

Section 3

Environmental Scan International & Regional Developments In Fisheries


International Best Practice Case Study

Section 4

The Fisheries Sector Of Trinidad & Tobago


The Current State Of The Industry
Recent Developments In The Industry
An Analysis Of Key Problems
Outlook For The Future Of The Fisheries Sector

Section 5

A Strategic Plan For The Fisheries Sector


A Vision, SWOT Analysis, Strategic Goals & Initiatives

Section 6

Implementation Of The Plan


Project Implementation Matrix

References
Appendices

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SECTION

TWO
A Framework For The Development Of The Fisheries Sector
2.1

Introduction

A long term strategy for the sustainable future of the fishing industry of any country,
developing or developed, should be based on sustainable management of marine resources
and ecosystems, and should take account of the diverse and changing circumstances of fishing
and related industries, and the social and economic development of the communities that
depend on fishing activity.
The strategy should guide policy formulation in government agencies with a role in the
development of the fisheries sector, and private sector investment in the fishing industry and
associated industries.
The strategy should promote the concept of integrated coastal area management as
fundamental to defining a future for the fisheries sector.
The strategy should be geared to provide a basis for response to regional and international
developments that affect the environment in which the fisheries sector operates.
The strategy should draw on the principles and guidelines set out in the FAO Code of Conduct
for Responsible Fisheries, which is widely recognized by governments and non-governmental
organizations as setting the aims for sustainable fisheries over the next few decades.
2.2

Key Elements In The Promotion Of A Sustainable Fishing


Industry

A sustainable fishing industry must have firm foundations in five related areas. At the heart of a
strategic agenda must be the sustainability of the fisheries resources. Supporting that central
objective, further themes are identified as providing the means by which sustainability of the

11

fisheries resources, the marine environment supporting those resources, and the fishing industry
itself might best be achieved 5 .
2.2.1

THE FOUNDATIONS OF A SUSTAINABLE FISHING INDUSTRY

Sustainable Fisheries Resources

An Economically Competitive Industry

A Rural/ Coastal Development Agenda

An Integrated Approach to Coastal and Marine Areas Management

An Inclusive Approach to Management of the Fisheries Sector

2.2.1.1 Sustainable Fisheries Resources


a)

In general, experience has shown that in the absence of effective fisheries management,
fisheries resources become over-exploited. Over-exploitation is synonymous with overcapitalization, falling yields from a fishery and, ultimately, falling financial returns.
Overcapacity of fishing fleets is one of the main factors responsible for unsustainable
fishing effort, while a regime of open access to marine resources and inefficiency of
traditional management measures have contributed to this situation.
The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) 6 , estimates that
worldwide, 47% of the main stocks or species groups are fully exploited, producing
catches at their maximum sustainable limits; 18% are over-exploited with negligible
prospects for increased production, and 10% are significantly depleted requiring drastic
long term measures to support recovery.
Increases in population and economic growth are putting additional pressures on fisheries
resources as contributors to food security and providers of a social safety net. At the
same time, the use of domestic fisheries to generate foreign exchange is exacerbating

Prime Ministers Strategy Unit, UK, 2004. Net Benefits A sustainable and profitable future for UK fishing.
Fisheries Division, 1994. (Draft) Policy Directions for Marine Fisheries of Trinidad and Tobago in the1990s
World Fish Centre, 2003. Assessment, Management and Future Directions for Coastal Fisheries in Asian
Countries
6
FAO 2002, The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture

12

allocation issues between artisanal and industrial fleets. Countries must therefore clarify
the linkage between development activities and sustainable resource use.
Key elements in ensuring the sustainability of the fisheries resources include:
1.

An effective fisheries management policy;

2.

Objective and reliable reporting on the status and trends in commercial


fisheries production, fish populations, and social and economic performance;

3.

A regulatory framework that supports good fisheries management practices;

4.

Collaboration among stakeholders, including community based management


systems and partnering arrangements;

5.

Regional and international collaboration in the management of shared or


transboundary fisheries resources.

An Effective Fisheries Management Policy

Ensure through proper conservation and management, that the fisheries resources
are not endangered by overfishing;

Ensure that the exploitation of the fisheries resources and the conduct of related
activities, are consistent with ecological sustainability;

Maximise economic efficiency of identified fisheries;

Ensure accountability to the fishing industry and the community at large for
fisheries management;

Support a collaborative approach to management of the fisheries sector through a


formalized system of social partnership between the government and the private
sector;

Support national participation in a regional or international approach to the


management of shared stocks

13

b)

The Case of Trinidad & Tobago


In Trinidad and Tobago, many of the traditional coastal marine resources are
either heavily exploited or over exploited. There are also problems of incidental
capture of non-target species and a high level of discards of juvenile finfish. There
is a general lack of information on the offshore fishery, however, there is evidence
of a decline in the abundance of certain commercially valuable offshore species.
The critical issues in fisheries management particularly in the coastal areas are the
open access regime which permits free entry to the fisheries for nationals, and the
conflicts caused through interactions between different fishing fleets; the nonselective nature of fishing gear; the need for a bilateral or regional approach to the
management of shared resources; problems of surveillance and enforcement of
maritime boundaries and illegal fishing activity occurring in both inshore and
offshore areas; and inadequate representation and participation of stakeholders in
fisheries management, resulting in a lack of support for existing management
measures.

2.2.1.2 An Economically Competitive Industry


a)

A sustainable industry needs commercial strategies to ensure that it is profitable and


competitive in the local, regional and global markets for fish products. Long-term
profitability requires returns adequate to allow investment in new boats and equipment,
wages high enough to attract and keep a skilled crew, safety in fishing operations, and
sufficient reserves to enable survival through natural downturns in fish stocks and
prices.
Fish and fish products are at the forefront of food safety and quality improvement
because they are among the most internationally traded food commodities. In 2001,
global fish trade amounted to US$54,000 million, of which approximately 50%
originated in developing countries. To ensure competitiveness an industry must be
structured to support investment in processing and trade where international quality

14

control standards are applied to the method of production as well as to the final product.
Additional issues such as increasing the value-added to fish products, the development of
new products, niche markets and other new market opportunities must also be considered.
The commercial environment should provide for:-

b)

1.

Proper management of the commercial fisheries in support of a


modern economically efficient fleet;

2.

Infrastructure appropriate to the landing, marketing, storage and


distribution of fish;

3.

Fish production and processing systems that conform to national and


international quality control criteria;

4.

Market intelligence and a strategy in support of investment and trade


in the fisheries sector, particularly in the development of new market
opportunities.

The Case Of Trinidad & Tobago


The national fishing fleet is mainly artisanal and therefore restricted in its range
and capabilities. There is a small, mobile, adaptable semi-industrial fleet and an
ageing industrial fleet. Over 80% of the industrial vessels are over 20 years old 7 .
There is little economic data and few economic analyses of the performance of the
fishing sector, however recent analyses of two fisheries suggest that the operations
of semi-industrial vessels are the most economically efficient8 .
Artisanal fishermen are particularly vulnerable to instabilities in resource
abundance and market prices, with limited access to financial support, and no
access to insurance, either for themselves or for their assets. With increasing
concerns about theft of engines and equipment, and at-sea piracy, fishing has
become a high risk investment.

Kuruvilla, S. et al, 2000, Economic performance and technological features of marine capture fisheries the trawl
fishery of Trinidad and Tobago
8
Martin, L et al, 2004, Economic performance and technological features of marine capture fisheries the longline
fisheries of Trinidad and Tobago

15

Landing site infrastructure is inadequate to service the semi-industrial and


industrial fleet 9 . There are no ice-making facilities, little or no storage for the
catch and few sites provide fuel and other basic amenities. Conditions at the sites
are generally unsanitary and do not conform to public health and quality
assurance standards 10 . Market infrastructure is sub-standard, and poor marketing
and distribution systems result in losses and a poor quality product 11 .
International trade in fish and fishery products out of Trinidad and Tobago is
based mainly on the export of shrimp, flyingfish, snappers, swordfish, and tunas.
Fishery products are exported mainly chilled or frozen, with minimal processing, so
there is little value added to the product. Trinidad and Tobago has not been eligible
to export to the EU since 1999 because of the lack of conformity to the required
quality control criteria. There is no policy or strategy in place, to facilitate
development of trade in the sector and existing administrative procedures are
inefficient and onerous.

2.2.1.3 A Rural / Coastal Development Agenda


a)

Fisheries can be a sustainable, renewable resource, and for some fisheries-dependent


areas, maintaining access to fishing opportunities is one of only a few viable ways of
sustaining local employment and income generation. Maintaining a sustainable fishing
industry can contribute to these objectives but it requires a strategic approach to ensure
maximum impact and support from available mechanisms.
Explicit social objectives are required for the sector. With collaboration between
institutions with economic development roles, there may be opportunities in fisheries that
will contribute to social policy objectives. Social policy tools should be analysed to
ensure that they do not hamper the competitiveness of the industry or the good
management of the stocks.

Jordan, C., 2002, Determination of the most appropriate landing site for the offshore fisheries sector.
Teemull, S., 1999 Memorandum with enclosed report on evaluation of 36 landing sites in Trinidad and Tobago by
the Chemistry, Food and Drugs Department.
11
Nurse, C., 2004, A summary of fisheries infrastructure in Trinidad and Tobago with respect to fish landing,
handling and storage facilities
10

16

It is important to ensure that smaller, vulnerable communities continue to have access to


fishing opportunities that, with increased competition, may flow to larger ports or
operators.
The development of an agenda for Rural/ Coastal Fishing Communities should
include:
1. An assessment of the economic and social importance of the fisheries sector
to coastal fishing communities;
2. Clear objectives for enabling the most vulnerable and fishing dependent
communities to maintain a local fishing industry where it can be competitive
and profitable;
3. An examination of alternative employment opportunities within the fisheries
sector, and in other sectors;
4. Strategies to address issues of safety and security at sea.

b)

The Case Of Trinidad & Tobago


There is very little information available on the economic and social importance of
fisheries to rural/ coastal communities in Trinidad and Tobago although many
coastal communities depend either entirely or partially on fisheries for their
livelihood. There are about 3000 artisanal fishermen, and smallscale fishing
accounts for 80% of the national fish production.
For many, this is a subsistence activity, very much subject to the cycle of peaks and
troughs in abundance of the resource. Fishing communities often depend on
alternative sources of income during seasons of low fisheries abundance. Fishing
gear is traditional, and boats are seldom outfitted with navigational aids or safety
equipment. Artisanal fishermen are increasingly subject to security risks and
piracy.

17

There are few administrative or legal controls on artisanal fishing, and limited
protection from the impact of more large scale semi-industrial or industrial fishing
by nationals and illegal foreign fishing vessels.

2.2.1.4 An Integrated Approach To Coastal & Marine Areas Management


a)

If coastal resource systems are to remain productive, their management requires a holistic
and comprehensive approach. Integrated Coastal Area Management is a recognized tool
for managing coastal areas. Coastal states should ensure that an appropriate policy, legal
and institutional framework is adopted to achieve the sustainable and integrated use of
the resources.
Commercial fisheries are only one user of the wider marine environment, alongside
recreational activities (including fishing), tourism, energy based activities, agriculture,
settlements, and habitat and biodiversity protection. In view of the multiple uses of the
coastal area, and the rights of coastal communities, the fisheries sector must be
represented in coastal area management planning and development.
The integration of fisheries within a framework of broader marine management
should:

b)

1.

Maximize the overall value of using the marine environment;

2.

Ensure ecosystem health, and fulfill national obligations on resource


management and species protection;

3.

Ensure that representatives of the fisheries sector and fishing


communities are consulted in the decision-making processes and
involved in other activities related to coastal area management
planning and development.

The Case Of Trinidad & Tobago

18

Commercial fisheries are only one user of the wider marine environment, alongside
energy based activities, agriculture, settlements, tourism, and habitat and biodiversity
protection. The fisheries sector is increasingly marginalised by coastal development in
Trinidad, where the oil and gas sector and associated industries take precedence in the
development agenda, and in Tobago, where tourism is recognized as a powerful tool
for development, and there are potential areas of conflict with the fishing industry.
A 1992 study of the Gulf of Paria 12 examined the threats to fisheries from pollution
from a range of man made sources, including oil pollution, shipping activity,
pesticides, and industrial effluent. A 1995 survey of 100 fishermen 13 from the west
coast of Trinidad found one of the greatest concerns to be the impact of pollution
from oil and shipping on the fisheries resources. A 2005 Report in UWItoday
14
referred to the ongoing decline of the marine environment from trace metal
pollution in Chaguaramas, sewage in Port of Spain Harbour, industrial effluents at
Pt. Lisas and oil in Point Fortin and calls for Holistic Development Planning to
balance development aspiration and environmental needs. These issues are of
increasing concern in the present trading environment where ongoing
environmental monitoring of fisheries habitats, are part of the fisheries production
and processing system.
Statutory land use planning is conducted by the Town and Country Planning Division,
under the Town and Country Planning Act, Chapter 35:01. The Act concentrates on
the control of land development and does not specifically address marine areas,
however, it acknowledges the need for the control of activities that will impact on the
marine environment 15 .
The Marine Areas (Preservation and Enhancement) Act of 1970, and the Marine
Areas (Preservation and Enhancement) Regulations of 1973 are conservation oriented
however, the Act is currently applied only to the management of coral reefs. The

12

Boodoosingh, M., 1992 A Review of the Possible Impacts of Human Activities on Fisheries in the Coastal Waters
of Trinidad With Emphasis on the Gulf of Paria
13
Ramjohn, D., 1995 Local Knowledge Survey, FAO/UNDP Project INT/91/ 007 Integrated Coastal Fisheries
Management:
14
Agard, J. and J. Gobin, 2005 Gulf of Paria Heavily Polluted: Holistic development planning needed to balance
development aspirations and environmental needs. UWItoday, 2005
15
Town and Country Planning Division, Ministry of Planning and Mobilisation, 1989. Land use planning: an
important basis for sustainable development. Ministry of Planning and Mobilisation, Port of Spain: Trinidad. 13 p.

19

Buccoo Reef area in Tobago is the only area that has been designated a restricted area
under the Act.
The key agencies involved in environmental and coastal zone management are the
Institute of Marine Affairs (IMA), established by Act of Parliament in 1976, and the
Environmental Management Authority (EMA), arising out of the Environmental
Management Act No. 3 of 1995. The Act provides for management of the
environment within Trinidad and Tobago and defines environment as all land, area
beneath the land surface, atmosphere, climate, surface water, groundwater, sea,
marine and coastal areas, sea bed, wetlands and natural resources within the
jurisdiction of Trinidad and Tobago. The Act promotes an integrated approach to
sustainable development and provides for environmental impact assessments,
protection of natural resources, control of pollution and hazardous substances. The
submission of an environmental impact assessment (EIA) by the developer and the
mandatory Certificate of Environmental Clearance (CEC) issued by the EMA for most
development activities provide opportunities for the implementation of an integrated
approach to development.

2.2.1.5 An Inclusive Approach To Management Of The Fisheries Sector


a)

A strategic approach to a sustainable fishing industry will have maximum impact if all
fisheries interests are willing to support the aims contained within it. Over the last
decade, co-management arrangements in fisheries and coastal resource management have
been widely promoted. In the Caribbean region there has also been increased interest in
co-management, and new management approaches have been sought.
Co-management focuses on sharing management responsibility and authority between
government and stakeholders. There may be several possible arrangements.

Government has
the most control

Consultative comanagement

Collaborative comanagement

Government
interacts often but
makes all the
decisions

Government and
the stakeholders
work closely and
share decisions

(From Pomeroy et al, 2004)

20

Delegated comanagement
Government lets
formally
organized users /
stakeholders make
decisions

People have most


control

A study in the region examined co-management projects in Belize, Barbados and


Grenada and at special workshops for stakeholders in each country, the conditions
supporting and constraining the implementation of co-management were identified 16 .
Six conditions were considered particularly important for the success of comanagement:
1.

Membership is clearly defined as to who really has a stake in the fishery;

2.

There is a shared recognition of a resource use problem that needs to be


addressed;

3.

Clear objectives for management can be defined based on the problems and
interests;

4.

Communication amongst the stakeholders is effective, and there is adequate


networking;

5.

External agents provide support for management but do not encourage


dependency;

6.

Management rules are enforceable by resource users and the management


authority.

Several conditions were found to constrain the implementation of co-management:

16

Management approaches of government for coastal resource management


are not flexible and responsive to changing circumstances

There is a lack of effective leadership among fishers to guide change

Group cohesion among fishers is weak and they tend to quarrel among
themselves

There is limited trust and mutual respect between government and fishers
and, in some cases, between fishers for each other

Organizational capacity of fishers is weak

Pomeroy, R.S. et al, 2004, Comparative analysis of coastal resources co-management in the Caribbean

21

b)

Legislation providing property rights over resources and providing


authority for fishers to make decisions is absent

In many cases, fishers expect government to do things for them and they
are reluctant to get involved in management

Case of Trinidad & Tobago


There are currently 34 fishing organizations (9 co-operatives and 25 Associations)
in Trinidad and Tobago. Of these, 24 are in Trinidad and 10 in Tobago, however,
these organizations are generally not well managed or effective 17 . Of the two
groups, the cooperatives are more organized, with formal registration with the
Ministry of Labour, and management by a Board of Directors. In Trinidad, the
Cedros Fishing Cooperative is the most successful maintaining a fishing complex,
and operating a gas station and post-office. In Tobago where the industry is not as
diverse, there has been greater success in forming a united grouping. In 1999 the
All Tobago Fisherfolk Association (ATFA) was formed as a legal entity.
In 1988, an umbrella organization of fisheries related groups, called the National
Organisation of Fishermen and Allied Cooperatives Society Ltd.(NOFACS), was
formed to coordinate the representation of the fisheries sector. The effectiveness of
this organization has been severely limited by the general lack of organization at all
levels in the industry, and poor representation in the fishing communities. Based
on the achievements of ATFA, an umbrella organization called the Trinidad and
Tobago Union of Fisherfolk (TTUF) was registered in 2005.
There is a Monitoring and Advisory Committee on
Tobago made up of public sector representatives
industry, and a National Monitoring Committee on
Matters (MCFF.) Both committees are chaired by

17

the fisheries of Trinidad and


and members of the fishing
Foreign Fishing and Related
the Director of Fisheries and

Picou-Gill, 2003, Picou-Gill, M. 2003. Report on Institutional Building Conference. CARICOM Regional
Fisheries Mechanism Workshop, Georgetown, Guyana. September 29-30, 2003. 37pp.

22

report to the Minister responsible for fisheries. There are concerns however that
the structure and operations of the Committees are public sector driven and do little
to strengthen capability within the industry.
Consultation with the fishing industry is generally not ongoing, tending to be
reactive to the need to resolve contentious issues that impact the livelihood of the
industry. The mechanisms for ongoing consultation and information sharing are
hampered by a lack of information and understanding on the part of both the
industry and government officials. The existing legal framework and institutional
structure do not provide for the enabling policies or legislation required to support
formal co-management initiatives or to guarantee the involvement of the fishing
industry in the management of the sector.

23

SECTION

THREE
Environmental Scan
3.1

Recent International Developments

3.1.1

GLOBAL TRENDS IN PRODUCTION, UTILIZATION & TRADE

Global production from capture fisheries and aquaculture, provides more that 15% of total
animal protein supplies 18 (FAO SOFIA, 2002).
In 2000, marine capture fisheries were
estimated at 95 million tonnes and the contribution to global supplies from aquaculture was
reported at 46 million tonnes. The increase in marine capture fisheries after a period of relative
stability since the early 1990s has been attributed to China, which is by far the largest producer,
at 17 million tonnes. Aquaculture production has increased from 4% of total production in 1970
to 27% in 2000. China was reported to have produced 71% of the total volume of aquaculture
production. It is estimated that global demand for seafood will increase to over 160 million
tones by 2020 with the increase being met mainly through an increase in aquaculture
production 19 .
Outside of China, however, global per capita fish supply has fallen from 15 kg in 1987 to 13 kg
in 2000. In recent years, after four decades of steadily expanding catches, there have been
significant declines in a number of commercially important fish stocks. While for the two
decades following 1950, fisheries production increased by about 6% per year, trebling from 18 to
56 million tonnes, the average rate of increase declined to 2% between 1970 and 1980, and fell
to almost zero in the 1990s.
Employment in the primary capture fisheries and aquaculture production sectors has remained
relatively stable since 1995, and was estimated to be about 35 million in 2000, of which 65
percent were in marine capture fisheries and 20 percent in aquaculture production. Declining
catches in some of the major commercial fisheries have however cost about 100,000 jobs and the
cost of fish in some local market places rose dramatically, placing fish our of reach for many low
income consumers.
18
19

FAO 2002 State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture


Seafood International 2004/2005

24

International trade in fish products increased to a new record of US$55 billion in 2000, with
developing countries accounting for 50% of total exports in value terms. Net export trade from
developing countries increased from US$ 10 billion in 1990 to US$18 billion in 2000
corresponding to a real growth of 45%. Developed countries accounted for more that 80% of the
value of total fishery product imports, with Japan, the EC and the United States as the main
importers.
Figure 1: World Capture Fisheries Production (FAO State of World Fisheries, 2002).

Figure 2: Trends in World Aquaculture Production (SOFIA Report, 2002)

25

3.1.2

DEVELOPMENTS IN FISHERIES MANAGEMENT

In recent years, world fisheries have become a market-driven, dynamically developing sector and
coastal States have striven to take advantage of new opportunities by investing in modern fishing
fleets and factories in response to the growing international demand for fish and fish products. It
was clear that unregulated fisheries on the high seas, in some cases involving straddling and
highly migratory fisheries which occur within and outside EEZs were becoming a matter of
concern. As a result, there have been a number of international Conventions and Agreements to
manage these resources, and increasing emphasis on the formation of international and regional
fisheries management bodies. Consistent with these instruments, the FAO Governing Body in
1995, formulated a global Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries establishing principles
and standards of good fisheries practice.
The major global developments affecting the practice of fisheries management are as follows:

1982 United Nations Convention On The Law Of The Sea (UNCLOS)


The 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS)
created a new international order for global fisheries conferring on coastal states
both the rights of access to marine resources in a new 200 mile exclusive
economic zone, and the responsibility for conservation and management of these
resources. It conferred on Trinidad and Tobago, archipelagic status and gave the
country jurisdiction over a maritime area of approximately 75,000 km, or almost
15 times the land area.

1992 Rio Declaration


Subsequent to UNCLOS, there has been increasing global concern about the
depletion of fish stocks and the collapse of major commercial fisheries. This has
been attributed to a combination of factors including over capacity of fishing
fleets, pollution, environmental degradation, and habitat loss.
In the 1992 Rio Declaration, States reaffirmed there commitment to pursue
integrated coastal fisheries and oceans management as set out in the United
Nations Conference on the Environment and Development (UNCED),
Chapter 17 of Agenda 21.

26

1993 Compliance Agreement, 1995 Fish Stocks Agreement


Over the last ten years, new approaches to fisheries management have been
institutionalized by the adoption of a number of international conventions,
agreements and legal instruments. Of particular importance is the 1993
Agreement to Promote Compliance with International Conservation and
Management Measures by Fishing Vessels on the High Seas and the 1995
Convention on the Conservation and Management of Straddling Fish Stocks
and Highly Migratory Fish Stocks which established in international law,
provisions, in respect of sustainable management and conservation of fisheries
resources in the high seas.

Code Of Conduct On Responsible Fisheries


In 1995, member states of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United
Nations (FAO) adopted the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, a
voluntary instrument which promotes the adoption of responsible practices in
fishing and commercial practices by States at the national and regional level. The
Code is a guide for States, fishing entities and all those with an interest in the
fisheries sector
The international plans of action (IPOAs) were developed in 1999 as a form of
international voluntary agreement to manage compliance with the Code. They
seek to manage and conserve on an international level, the resources of Sharks
and Seabirds threatened by fishing activity, to limit and reduce the current
overcapacity in the worldwide fishing fleet, and to prevent, deter and eliminate
illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing.

Environmental Issues
There are serious concerns about bycatch and discards in major commercial
fisheries particularly where protected species such as dolphins and turtles have
been affected. There is also increasing emphasis on the importance of a holistic
approach to managing fisheries resources. It requires good-quality, relevant data
on fish populations, the ecosystem and fishery dynamics and interactions, and
may involve collaboration with neighbouring States or fishing nations who share
these resources.

27

Regional Fisheries Governance


The importance of cooperation in the conservation and management of
transboundary stocks has resulted in an increased emphasis on the establishment
of sub-regional and regional fisheries management organizations and
arrangements, and harmonized or compatible approaches to resource utilization
and management.

Social Partnerships In Fisheries Management


The promotion of good governance through efforts to broaden the involvement of
stakeholder groups and to make fisheries management decision-making more
inclusive and representative are being made at all levels, from the international to
the local. This may require the concomitant devolution of some aspects of
legislative, managerial, financial and administrative capacity, if these efforts are
to fulfill their potential for building on local knowledge and skills. Environmental
funding agencies such as the Global Environmental Facility (GEF) of the World
Bank, build the requirements for stakeholder participation into international
funding for regional or global resource management.

3.1.3

DEVELOPMENTS IN THE GLOBAL FISHING INDUSTRY

During recent years international trade in fishery products has been faced with a number of new
developments including the change in quality control measures in the main importing countries
towards a preventive Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) based strategy, the
concept of risk assessment, general public concern regarding overexploitation of the resource,
and more recently, discussions on traceability and labeling, and the issue of subsidies.

Food Safety & Quality


Quality assurance in food includes all activities carried out to ensure the quality and
safety of food and includes every stage from initial production to processing, storage,
marketing and consumption. This has significant implications for the fisheries sector in

28

terms of post harvest handling practices and marketing, processing and export procedures
and for national institutions with responsibility for implementing environmental
monitoring programmes, and upholding food safety regulations.
The EU and the United States have made quality control systems mandatory for all
plants producing fish or fish products for export to their markets. While the US enforces
these measures through importers in the US, the EC places responsibility on the
competent authorities in the exporting countries.

Environmental Issues
Environmental issues have gained markedly in significance and increasingly impinge on
international trade. Fishing techniques perceived to be damaging to a resource or the
environment may be prohibited from entry into certain markets. Concern about bycatch
and discards in major commercial fisheries have resulted in trade bans in fisheries where
protected species such as dolphins and turtles have been affected.

Certification & Labeling


The principal objective of product certification and catch documentation is to prevent,
deter and eliminate illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing. Where product
certification comes with a label to inform consumers, it may influence consumer choice.
Product labeling may be mandatory or voluntary and may refer to product characteristics
or attributes including composition or contents, product quality or form, as well as
environmental or social aspects of the production process. One of the main objectives of
an ecolabelling scheme is to create a market-based incentive for better management of
fisheries by creating consumer demand for seafood products from well-managed stocks.

Subsidies
Fisheries subsidies are viewed as both trade distorting by the World Trade Organisation
(WTO), and as a significant contributing factor to the overcapacity of fishing fleets and
overexploitation of fisheries resources. The issue of subsidies in fisheries is the subject
of international discussion, and the FAO is currently promoting strategies for the
identification, assessment and measurement of fisheries subsidies.

29

3.2

A Review of the Regional Fisheries Industry 20

The fisheries sector in the CARICOM region has both capture and culture components. The
marine capture component is by far the most economically important and comprises the
harvesting of shrimp, prawns, spiny lobsters, conch, reef fishes, snappers and groupers, offshore
tuna like fish, coastal jacks and mackerels, and flying fish. Inland capture fisheries are an
important source of protein for rural communities in Guyana, Jamaica and Belize. Some riverine
species are collected largely for the ornamental fish trade.
The artisanal sub-sector represents the largest segment of fishers. They concentrate mostly on
primary production, which is distributed through vendors primarily for domestic consumption.
Some of the artisanal catches are sold directly to fish processing plants where it enters the export
market. The industrial sub-sector comprises larger capital intensive vessels which operate
mainly in off shore areas, largely targeting highly priced, high value-added species such as spiny
lobsters (Jamaica and the Bahamas), Conch (Jamaica, Bahamas and Belize), and shrimp and
prawns (Guyana and Belize). The extent of the recreational fisheries sub-sector is unknown but
is considered to be very important in many Member States
Of the 17,753 fishing vessels in the region, 11,569 or 65% are artisanal types and 297 or
approximately 17% are large commercial vessels, concentrated mostly in Suriname, the Bahamas
and Guyana. There are over 70,000 directly employed fishers.
Aquaculture is at varying stages of development and is generally more established in the larger
territories such as Jamaica where the dominant food species is the red hybrid tilapia and more
recently marine shrimp, and Belize, which focuses on penaeid shrimp culture. Less developed
food fish culture exists in other countries such as St. Lucia (sea moss) and Trinidad and Tobago
(Tilapia). Ornamental fish culture development exists in some countries and is relatively well
developed in Trinidad and Tobago.
3.2.1

Regional Trends in Production, Utilization and Trade

Fish production in CARIFORUM in 1998 was 126,360 metric tons of which 29.1% were
crustaceans (shrimps, prawns, and spiny lobsters) and mollusks (mainly conch) and 70.9% were

20

CARICOM Fisheries Unit, 2002, Strategic Plan for Regional Fisheries Mechanism.

30

finfish. The estimated value using an average of US $ 4,000 per metric ton is US $505.4
million.
The percentage contribution to GDP as primary production is significant in Guyana (8.3%) and
to a lesser extent in Suriname (3.8%). It however ranges from between less than 0.3% to under
3.0% in all other Member States. The period for the available data is 1995 for most countries.
Despite the fact that the sub- sector has grown over the past five years, as a primary product with
low value, it has not significantly increased its share of the GDP.
There are no significant
developments in the sector, including resources availability to make the level of GDP
significantly different.
These figures understate the real value of the sector because its
contribution is currently measured by primary fisheries output only (i.e. the ex-vessel value of
landings) and does not take into account the value added in the secondary
manufacturing/processing sector of the industry.
The export of fish and fish products in 1998 was 31, 524 metric tons. The estimated value of
this 1998 export using an average of US $5 per kilogram was US $158 million. Fish imports
were estimated at around US $ 543 million for 1998. The dominant fish imports are salted fish,
and processed canned fish such as: sardines, tuna, and mackerel. From a Regional perspective,
the fisheries sector is generally a net importer except among the major producers Bahamas,
Belize, Guyana, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago and
Grenada to a lesser extent.
It is estimated that direct employment in the sector is over 70,000 and indirect or secondary
employment based on the data provided for nine (9) CARIFORUM States is at least 88% of
direct employment or another 62,000. Further, it is estimated that most (over 70%) of the labor
in secondary employment are women engaged in processing and vending. The employment of
over 130,000 represents about 1.8% of the working population.
Overall, the fisheries sector is assessed to be of considerable socio-economic importance to the
economies of the Member States of CARICOM and CARIFORUM. In addition to the data
provided on employment, trade and GDP, it contributes immensely as an income generating or
poverty alleviation opportunity for some of the most economically disadvantaged communities.
Fisheries also play a major role in nutrition and food security. In many Member States, the bulk
of the supply of animal protein for domestic consumption especially in rural, coastal
communities comes from the fisheries sector. Fish therefore has to be regarded as a vital source
of protein and contributor to essential mineral and vitamins of the diet.

31

3.2.2

Challenges Common to the Region 21

The challenges common to the region were identified through consultation with member
countries and are outlined below:

Building Research & Development Capabilities


The required research and development must seek to build capabilities in four (4) areas:
fisheries data bases and information system, integration of data into fisheries
management plans, the networking of research facilities, and collaboration on the
management of shared resources (including straddling and highly migratory stocks).

Positioning Globally
Sound global positioning will require the region to have legislation and regulations
governing fisheries, in accordance with global ones to which the Community is
committed. These revolve around: food safety and agricultural health standards and
procedures, industry personnel trained and qualified in quality assurance practices and
environmental standards as well as certified HACCP status and post harvest management
competencies and practices.

Building Regional Capability for Managing Resources


The region needs to build its capabilities in planning and regulations, exploitation of
shared resources, monitoring, control, surveillance and enforcement and developing and
implementing policy framework for sports fishing.

Managing Flyingfish Resources


A special intervention is required for a few selected countries such as Trinidad and
Tobago, Barbados, St. Kitts Nevis and St. Lucia where flying fish is of major
importance.
The intervention should deliver the distinctive outputs: agreements for

21

CARICOM Fisheries Unit, 2002, Strategic Plan for Regional Fisheries Mechanism

32

accessing flying fish, data base for biological and catch/effort information, surveillance
capability to control illegal fishing and introduction of post harvest technology to reduce
loss and increase yield.

Enhancing Human Resource Development


The challenge is building knowledge in the industry as a main driver behind objectives
such as responsible fishing, sound resource management, the upgrading of skills in
research, policy and regulations and the operating of centers of excellence for training.

Strengthening Fishers Organizations


The strengthening of fisher folk organizations should address the strengthening of fisher
cooperatives, the introduction of licensing systems allied to training and competency,
training programs for vessel operators, and the establishment of functional partnerships
with the relevant government organizations.

Promoting Community Participation & Public Support


Community participation and public support will be required to: ensure that there is
sound understanding of the socio economic importance of the fishing industry,
enlighten consumer groups about the required fishing standards and improve public
attitude to fishers. This will entail institutional strengthening of fishing community
advocacy groups, community awareness of appropriate utilization and management of
marine resources, public and leadership awareness of the importance of the fishing
industry and rationalization of the bureaucratic organizations serving it.

Promoting Expansion of Pelagic Fishery & Other Underutilized & Unutilized Resources
This should entail four (4) interventions: promotion of the use of FADS, training in
pelagic fishing methods, development of a regional management plan, and integration
and improvement of the collection of biological and catch/effort data.

Developing the Marine Fisheries Sub-sector


Development of the marine sub-sector is necessary to diversify the fishing industry and
reduce the pressure on traditional fisheries resources. This would require: undertaking

33

applied research to determine potentially viable underutilized species, development of


legislation and regulation for sustainable management, development of harmonized
policies to encourage private investment and development and implementation of
investment promotion programs.

Developing Aquaculture
Attention to this sub-sector should encompass the creation of a policy framework to
promote private sector investment together with public sector support programs in areas
such as extension programs, the enforcement of environmental standards and the
establishment of guidelines for regulating the sub-sector.

Facilitating Diversification
The recommended mechanisms entail building capabilities in information gathering and
dissemination, decreasing resource use conflicts between interest groups and reducing
destructive fishing practices, promoting the use of discards, and improving the ecological
monitoring of coastal habitat.

Reducing Risks
Small-scale fishers are exposed to unusual levels of risks because of inadequate
availability of affordable insurance, and personal and business exposures to natural
disasters. This situation is influenced by the nature of the sea, lack of enforcement of
safety regulations, ignorance among fishers, and complacency. In addition, fisher folk
do not have adequate personal funds to invest in improved fishing practices that could
improve their compliance with mandatory environmental standards, yields, and general
efficiencies.

Prevention and Resolution of Conflicts


From time to time there are conflicts between Member States in the coastal areas as well
as between the various users of the coastal zone in a state. All these conflicts affect the
sustainable livelihoods of the fisher folk.

34

3.2.3

The Regional Approach to Fisheries Management 22

A Common Fisheries Regime


The current effort to establish a Common Fisheries Policy and Regime (CFP&R) at the
CARICOM level was initiated at the Fourteenth Inter-Sessional Meeting of the Conference of
Heads of Government in Trinidad and Tobago, 14-15 February 2003. The Heads of Government
endorsed proposals from the Government of Barbados on the imperative of elaborating a
Common Fisheries Regime and mandated the CARICOM Secretariat to undertake the necessary
consultations and propose a framework for consideration at the Twenty-Fourth Meeting in July
2003. The Fifteenth Inter-Sessional Meeting of the Conference of Heads of the Caribbean
Community, Basseterre, St. Kitts and Nevis, 25-26 March 2004 endorsed the continued
elaboration of a Common Regional Fisheries Regime. Also, at this Meeting, the CARICOM
Heads agreed that in order to effectively protect the Caribbean Sea and promote the sustainable
use of its fisheries resources, member states will ensure the successful functioning of the recently
established Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism and will in due course consider investing it
with the authority to administer a comprehensive Common Fisheries Regime 23 .

Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM)


The Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) was inaugurated on 26 March 2003 in
Belize. At present, its members are Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados,
Belize, British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts
and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago and the
Turks and Caicos Islands.
The objectives of the CRFM are:

22

23

(a)

the efficient management and sustainable development of marine and other


aquatic resources within the jurisdiction of member states;

(b)

the promotion and establishment of cooperative arrangements among interested


states for the efficient management of shared, straddling or highly migratory
marine and other aquatic resources; and

Cruickshank, J. et al. Implementing Mechanism for the Common Fisheries Policy and Regime (Discussion Paper)
Dundas and Mitchell, 2004. A Common Fisheries Regime for the Caribbean Sea

35

(c)

the provision of technical advisory and consultative services to fisheries divisions


of member states in the development, management and conservation of their
marine and other aquatic resources.

It also acknowledges Resolution 51/225 of the United Nations General Assembly, dated 15
February 2000 on promoting an integrated management approach to the Caribbean Sea in the
context of sustainable development and takes cognizance of the revised treaty of Chaguaramas
(2001) Establishing the Caribbean Community including the CARICOM Single Market and
Economy.
The CRFM has developed a Strategic Plan24 , for implementation over a period of about seven
years commencing in the year 2003. This Plan is complemented by a Medium Term Plan 25 ,
which describes the first set of programs to be implemented in the ensuing four years. Within the
Medium Term Plan the programme areas are identified as follows:
-

3.3

Research and data analysis for policy formulation and decision-making.


Preparation for global competitiveness.
Resource assessment and management.
Human resource development and institutional strengthening.
Strengthening of fishers organizations and improved community participation.
Promotion of expansion and utilization of un-utilized aquatic resources.
Development and promotion of aquaculture.
Development and promotion of risk reduction programs for fishers.
Development and promotion of programmes for conflict resolution among multiusers in coastal zones

International Best Practice Used In Development Of The


Industry

It is probably not possible to find a country either within or outside of the region where the ideals
set out in the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries are practiced in there entirety, their may
be strengths in certain aspects of development in the sector and weakness in other areas. It must
also be recognized that fisheries management is an evolving science that changes as we learn

24
25

CARICOM Fisheries Unit, 2002, Strategic Plan for Regional Fisheries Mechanism
CARICOM Fisheries Unit, 2002, Summary of CARICOM Regional Fisheries Mechanism Medium Term Plan

36

more about the impacts of fishing activity on the natural resources. For most countries,
development of the fisheries sector preceded attempts to implement management structures,
consequently, there are existing systems and dependent communities that must be considered
in the restructuring and development process.
3.3.1

Case Study

3.3.1.1 THE FISHERIES SECTOR OF NEW ZEALAND


The fisheries sector is New Zealand's fourth largest export earner 26 . In 2001, the sector produced
$1.5 billion in export revenue, of which about 15% comprised aquaculture production. The
industry operates under a pioneering and successful quota management system without subsidies,
and contributes to the cost of fisheries management via both cost recovery and direct delivery.
The sector employs 26,000 people (10,000 directly) and makes an important contribution to
regional economies. Up to 20% of New Zealanders participate in recreational fishing every year
and recreational fishing also attracts foreign tourists.
The majority of the commercial fisheries are harvested at a sustainable level. Recovery strategies
are in place for all stocks known to be depleted and work is continuing to develop new
frameworks and standards consistent with the environmental focus, and to improve knowledge
about the state of stocks and environmental impacts of fishing.
New Zealand earns 50 times more from fisheries exports today ($1.3 billion a year) than it did in
the 1970s (less than $20 million a year), this growth has increased employment, in catching and
processing fish, but also in transporting and marketing fish and providing other services to
fishing companies.
Table 1: Growth of Fishing Industry in terms of employment and export earnings.
Year
1975
1987
1991
1995
1997
1999

26

Employment
4100
7905
8430
9951
10,173
10,620

Year
1975
1979
1983
1987
1991
1992
1998
1999

Export Earnings ($Millions)*


17.9
57.9
285.5
676
961
1,217
1,233
1,330

www.fish.govt.nz/commercial/fisheries-plans/index.html

37

Year

Employment

Year
2000
Source: New Zealand Seafood Industry Council.

Export Earnings ($Millions)*


1,480

KEY FACTORS IN THE SUCCESS OF THE FISHING INDUSTRY OF NEW ZEALAND


Since 1986, New Zealand has used market instruments and science-based advice to manage the
fisheries resources. This includes a quota management system for the commercial sector. The
regime is innovative, and the focus of considerable international attention, as other nations try to
resolve the difficult issues of sustainable fisheries utilisation. Under the quota management
system, the sector has evolved from one focused on a 'race to fish' to one increasingly focused on
investment in market developments and the resource, and a collective accountability for fisheries
management.
Benchmarked against other nations, there is a relatively low level of government investment in
fisheries management and the ratio of net government expenditure on fisheries management to
the annual landed value of the fishery resource is 4 percent.
1.

GROWTH OF THE FISHING INDUSTRY

The main factors that supported the growth of New Zealand's fishing industry were:

Staking a Claim to National Waters


In 1978, New Zealand declared a 200 nautical mile Exclusive Economic Zone
(EEZ) covering 3.37 million square kilometres, with exclusive rights to manage
the fisheries in this zone, the commercial fishing in this area is now
predominantly done by New Zealand companies.

Improving Technology
-

The technology for finding and catching different fish species has
improved. Since the early 1980s, New Zealand's fishers have developed
ways of catching valuable deepwater species.
There is more added-value processing of fish before export.

Growth in the Domestic Market for Fish

38

Between 1987 and 1991, the value of fish sold in New Zealand rose by 21 percent
- and continues to increase. The fishing industry has promoted seafood to New
Zealanders, emphasising value for money, healthiness and variety.
Table 2: Value of Domestic Fish Sales In New Zealand ($million).
Year
1987
1989
1991
1993
1995
1997
1999

Sales ($Millions)
114
118
138
122
121
127
130

Source: New Zealand Seafood Industry Council.

GROWTH IN THE OVERSEAS MARKETS

The most important export markets for fish products have been Japan, the United
States and Australia. Important markets are also located in Europe and Asian
countries including Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand. The
Ministry of Fisheries has negotiated access to new export markets with other
governments.

Managing the Fisheries


New Zealand has developed a way of controlling fish harvesting, known as the
Quota Management System. In effect, a property rights system of individual
transferable quotas (ITQs) was introduced, designed along neoclassical
economics textbook lines for control of an "open access" resource. Widely
represented as a pioneering effort to put economic theory into practice, the idea
was to ensure simultaneously the twin goals of ecologically sustainable catch
levels and economically efficient levels of fishing effort. Fishers must buy or
already hold an Annual Catch Entitlement (ACE) for specific types of fish in
specific areas, giving them the right to harvest the fish for which they have ACE.
The ACE is generated from quota held by a person who may or may not be the
fisher. Quota and ACE can be bought or sold. This system means fishers can plan
for the future with confidence, and without depleting the fish stocks.

39

Farming fish & shellfish


Companies are developing new techniques for aquaculture. Farmed salmon and
mussels earn tens of millions of dollars in exports, and there are possibilities for
farming other species.

Enhancing the Fish Stocks


Work is also being done to build up "wild" stocks of fish and shellfish.

2.

GOVERNANCE STRUCTURE

Role of the Ministry of Fisheries


The Ministry of Fisheries is responsible for the conservation and management of fisheries. The
Ministry of Fisheries acts as advisor to the Government on the development of fisheries policies,
develops laws to manage fisheries and promotes compliance with the laws.
Organisational changes
In response to the changing external environment, the Ministry of Fisheries implemented a new
organisational structure. A key feature was the establishment of Fisheries Management business
groups, with dispersed responsibilities for managing fisheries and an increased focus on
standards and evaluation. The structure of the Ministry includes an Executive Team comprising
the Chief Executive and four General Managers, each responsible for one of four Business
Groups:
1.

A Policy and Strategy Business Group, with a focus upon strategy and policy
development for the sector, for the Ministry and for the wider Government;

2.

A Fisheries Management Business Group, with a focus upon regulatory


management and service specification;

3.

A Fisheries Services Business Group, with a focus upon the delivery of


services;

40

4.

A Corporate Services Business Group, with a focus upon across-Ministry and


support services for the three other Business Groups.

The Ministry also placed emphasis on its role in the development of an Oceans Policy for New
Zealand, management of the fisheries resources, and on fisheries related environmental issues.

Oceans Policy
The Ministry plays an important role in the development of an Oceans Policy for New
Zealand. This work is ongoing, with the Ministry for Environment as the lead department
supported by other departments. Key drivers for the development of an Oceans Policy
include the need to manage human impacts on the oceans more effectively and the wish
to ensure that New Zealand receives the best possible value from its oceans.

Fisheries management
The legal framework for fisheries management is more flexible and responsive than it has
been in the past. The new balancing regime may drive significant changes in the fishing
industry as it adapts to requirements to match catch with entitlements across fisheries.
Fisheries plans provide opportunities for stakeholders to develop and implement longterm management plans to better meet their needs, provided they do not cause adverse
effects to the environment or to other users. The cost recovery regime continues to drive
change as industry looks for more efficient and transparent delivery of services from the
Government.

Focus on environmental issues


The Fisheries Act of 1996, provides for utilisation of fisheries resources while ensuring
sustainability. The Act increased the environmental focus of the legal framework by
introducing environmental and information principles, which require decisions to be
based on the best available information and to take account of the wider ecosystem in
which fisheries exist.

Role of the Fishing Industry in Administration & Management


The Ministry has devolved a number of its administrative functions to industry owned companies
who provide among other services, the administration of the Quota Management System that
regulates New Zealand's commercial fishing activity.
41

The New Zealand Seafood Industry Council (SeaFIC) 27


The New Zealand Seafood Industry Council (SeaFIC) was created in 1996 to represent
the fishing industry. It took over most of the functions of the New Zealand Fishing
Industry Board (the FIB), a statutory body whose powers include an ability to impose a
levy, still used to fund SeaFIC's activities. Under the Commodity Levies Act 1990,
SeaFIC applys a levy on Quota holders for stocks subject to the Quota Management
System (QMS), fishing permit holders for non-QMS stocks, and holders of fish farming
permits, licences and leases.
Fisheries reforms implemented since 1996 have centred on providing stakeholders with
opportunities to participate more fully in fisheries management. One element of these
reforms has been to re-organise the industry's institutional arrangements, making industry
organizations more responsive to the needs of its constituents.

The Commercial Fisheries Services (CFS)


FishServe is a privately owned Company called Commercial Fisheries Services (CFS), a
wholly owned subsidiary of SeaFIC (Seafood Industry Council).
FishServe provides administration services to the New Zealand Commercial Fishing
Industry. These services include:

27

Fishing Permit issue


Vessel Registrations
Management of Permit and Vessel Registers
Registration of ACE Transfers
Registration of Quota Share Transfers
Management of ACE & Quota Share Registers
Processing of Fishing Returns
Collection of Revenue on behalf of the Crown
Allocation of new species into the Quota Management System
Registration of Caveats & Mortgages over Quota Shares

www.seafood.co.nz/about

42

The chart below shows FishServes relationship with industry organisations and
government agencies.
Figure 3: FishServes relationship with industry organisations and government agencies.

3.

STAKEHOLDER PARTICIPATION

Participation is enhanced through the ongoing development of fisheries plans by stakeholders,


and the Ministry of Fisheries business planning process. Consultations on the annual business
plan provide improved opportunities for discussion and review as a result of stakeholder
participation.
Stakeholders include customary, recreational, commercial, and environmental interests. The
main organisations representing these interests are the New Zealand SeaFood Industry Council
(SeaFIC), Maori representation through the Te Ohu Kaimoana (Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries
Commission, TOKM), New Zealand Recreational Fishing Council, Environment and
Conservation Organisations, and the Royal Forest and Bird Protection Society. The main service
provider organisations are FishServe for registry services and NIWA for research services.

43

DEVELOPMENT OF FISHERIES & LEVERAGE IN THE NEW ZEALAND FISHERIES SECTOR


1.

Growth through active promotion of fisheries on the domestic market.

2.

Growth of export markets through government intervention in trade negotiations.

3.

Improved capacity to allow for expansion of commercial fishing operations into EEZ.

4.

Developments in technology to support harvesting of non-traditional resources and


improve value-added on export products.

5.

Governance structure supports integral role of fishing industry in commercial aspects of


fishing operations and fishing industry management through quota systems.

6.

Levy system for cost recovery encourages more efficient provision of services

7.

Recognition and adaptation of management systems to meet the needs of different user
groups such as traditional (Maori) fishing communities/ recreational fishing interests/
commercial fishing operations.

8.

Responsive legislative and regulatory framework

9.

A management system that utilizes Individual Transferable Quotas to manage the


resources and encourage ownership rights and responsibilities for the fisheries. An
annual assessment of the resource status ensures that fishing effort is adjusted in relation
to resource status.

44

SECTION

FOUR
The Fisheries Sector of Trinidad and Tobago
4.1

The Current State Of The Industry

The information presented on the sector is derived from a report on a Review of Studies on the
Marine Fisheries of Trinidad and Tobago and Status of the Fisheries Resources submitted in
August 2004 to the Fish and Fish Processing Industry Team 28 . The economic data on the sector
was collected, analysed and presented in a Fisheries Division study on subsidies in the Fisheries
Sector 29 .
4.1.1

FISH PRODUCTION, UTILIZATION & TRADE

The fisheries sector of Trinidad and Tobago contributed TT$74 million to the Gross Domestic
Product (GDP) in 1998. This represented approximately 9% of the agriculture GDP and 0.2% of
the national GDP. Total annual landings for the marine capture fisheries of Trinidad and Tobago
for the period 1999/ 2000 were estimated at 14,000 metric tonnes with an ex-vessel value of
TT$130 million. The sector is thought to employ an estimated 6,000 persons of whom about
4,000 are engaged in harvesting the resources.
The consumption of fish and fishery products is estimated at 14 kg per capita, an increase of 2kg
over an estimated 12 kg in 1986. The majority of consumers prefer fresh, whole fish. The
annual requirement is met predominantly by local landings, but it is supplemented by the
importation of cured and canned fishery products, and frozen fish from the locally based
Taiwanese fishing operation. Imports have remained at just over 3000mt, valued at
approximately TT$35 million. The tourism and hospitality sector utilizes a significant portion of
fishery products from the domestic landings.
International trade in fish and fishery products is based mainly on the export of shrimp, snappers,
swordfish, tuna, and flyingfish and other pelagics. Fishery products are exported mainly chilled

28

Kuruvilla, S. 2004. Review of Studies on the Marine Fisheries of Trinidad and Tobago and Status of the Fisheries
Resources
29
Kuruvilla, S. et al, 2002, Study on Subsidies in the Fisheries Sector of Trinidad and Tobago

45

or frozen and processing technology is generally limited to primary processing and packaging.
Approximately 4,000 metric tonnes of fish valued at TT$62 million was exported in 2000 of
which over 40% in terms of revenue went to CARICOM markets, 30% to the United States and
22% to Canada 30 . Annual fish exports for the period 1997 to 2003 averaged just over 5,300
tonnes with an average value of TT$58 million 31 . Trinidad and Tobago has not been eligible to
export to the European Union since 1999 pending adjustments to meet the required quality
control criteria.
4.1.2

STRUCTURE OF THE SECTOR

The description of the fisheries sector examines the four components that form the basis of the
economic activities in the marine fishing industry and its associated service areas and briefly
outlines the current status of aquaculture operations.
4.1.2.1 Harvesting Component
The commercial harvesting of fish in Trinidad and Tobago is largely artisanal, typified by
manual operations and daily fishing trips. Of the 1,570 fishing vessels in the national fleet
(1999/ 2000), about 1500 are artisanal, operating in inshore coastal waters, 45 are semi-industrial
multi-gear vessels, operating in inshore and offshore areas and 25 are industrial trawlers
operating mainly off the west and south coasts of Trinidad.
The artisanal fleet is characterized by vessels 7 10 metres in length made of wood or fibreglass,
and powered by outboard engines. They fish daily in coastal areas and are equipped with
artisanal trawl gear, gillnets, lines or fish pots. Artisanal fishing vessels land at about 65 sites
around Trinidad and 32 sites in Tobago. The landing sites range from beaches with simple
structures for storage of equipment to large permanent buildings with areas for maintenance and
repair of gear and engines, storage of equipment, parking of vehicles and market facilities. In
1999, facilities existed at 25 sites in Trinidad 32 and 10 in Tobago 33 . Using data for the period
1997 to 2001 34 , and estimates for artisanal landings in Tobago 35 , artisanal landings for Trinidad
and Tobago were estimated at 11,000 metric tonnes annually or 79% of the total annual landings.

30

Central Statistical Office, 2000


Central Statistical Office, 2003
32
Chan A Shing, C, 2002, Atlas Marine Fisheries of Trinidad and Tobago Part I, Trinidad Inshore Fisheries
33
Potts. A, et al., 2001, An economic and social assessment of the flyingfish (pelagic) fisheries of Tobago
34
Ferreira, L., and Martin, L., 2004, National Report Trinidad and Tobago
35
Kuruvilla, S., et al, 2002
31

46

Figure 4: Map of fish landing sites in Trinidad (Fisheries Division).

The semi-industrial multi-gear fleet is capable of deploying a range of fishing gears and targeting
different fisheries. There are 45 of these vessels operating within the territorial waters and the
EEZ. Vessels in this category are 10-23 metres in length, generally constructed of fibreglass and
powered by inboard diesel engines. They may also be equipped with hydraulic winches. The
semi-industrial vessels may carry Geographic Positioning Systems (GPS) and depth sounding
equipment and fishing trips can last as long as 10 to 15 days. This fleet uses a variety of gears
depending on the fishery targeted, including stern trawls for targeting shrimp, fish pots to target
demersal snappers and groupers, live bait equipment for king mackerel and dolphin fish, surface
longlines for tunas and swordfish, and gillnets and lines for flyingfish and associated pelagics.

47

Figure 5: Map of fish landing sites in Tobago (Fisheries Division).

The industrial trawl fleet consists of about 25 Gulf of Mexico type trawlers outfitted with two
nets on outriggers. These vessels operate year round in the Gulf of Paria, off the south coast, and
seasonally off the north coast of Trinidad targeting shrimp and associated species of demersal
finfish such as salmon and croakers.
Semi-industrial and industrial vessels generally operate out of a few major sites on the west coast
of Trinidad and south-west Tobago. There is little infrastructure provided to accommodate the
mooring, repairs, servicing or offloading of these vessels. The industrial trawl fleet is based
mainly at one compound in Sea Lots, a site owned by the Port Authority and under lease to the
National Petroleum Marketing Company (NP). There is no purpose built infrastructure to
accommodate these vessels. The semi-industrial vessels occupy sites in Orange Valley, northwest Trinidad and the south west of Tobago. Most vessels are individually owned although a
few individuals may own several vessels. There are no company-owned fleets in Trinidad and
Tobago and processing plants and export companies usually purchase from individually owned
vessels through a system of wholesale buyers.

48

A study by Jordan (2002) 36 , looked at the most appropriate landing sites for vessels in the
offshore fisheries and recommended the NP facility at Sea Lots as the most suitable site,
although upgrading of the infrastructure and regularising of tenure was required. The
Almoorings site in Chaguaramas was recommended as another potential site for these vessels.
In 1999/ 2000, employment in the harvesting sector was estimated at 3908 fishermen (Kuruvilla
et al., 2002).
4.1.2.2 Suppliers & Service Industries
The industries that service the fisheries sector include boat-builders, suppliers of fishing gear and
suppliers of engines and parts. With regard to suppliers of other marine equipment, the fishing
industry represents a very minor part of their operation relative to the wider maritime sector.
The relative importance of the fisheries sector to these industries is often difficult to quantify and
financial information specific to sales to the sector is not readily available.
There are nine boat-building firms, of which four depend mainly on the fishing industry for
business. These firms supplied 46 artisanal vessels to the fishing industry in 1999/2000 valued at
TT$1.8 million. Another 40 companies supply inputs to the fishing fleet of which ten (10)
companies accounted for significant sales, consisting mainly of fishing gear, boat engines and
parts. Three companies account for the sales of outboard engines to the industry. Total sales of
boat engines during the period 1999/2000 were estimated at TT$3.1 million. Engine parts,
fishing gear, engine oil and other equipment, were supplied by 10 major companies. Total sales
in 1999/2000 amounted to TT$6.8 million.
Sales of other marine equipment to the fishing industry, such as electronic equipment were
relatively minor compared with sales to the entire maritime sector. Other equipment and
supplies utilized by the fishing sector make up a relatively small percentage of sales from other
suppliers and include items such as ice and packaging materials. Total identifiable sales to the
fisheries sector were estimated at TT$12 million and employment generated by fisheries
related input industries was estimated at about 80 persons.
4.1.2.3 Processing Component

36

Jordan, C., 2002, Determination of the most appropriate landing site for the offshore sector Fisheries
Component

49

Of the 17 processing plants operating in Trinidad and Tobago, seven were classified as mediumsized plants and ten as small plants. There are some temporary/ seasonal operations. The plants
are mainly primary processors and fish is sold on the local market or exported chilled or frozen.
The main source of raw material for the plants is the local fisheries but there is some purchase or
importation of tunas and other species from the National Fisheries Company, a foreign-owned
transhipment operation, and other species may be imported from neighbouring CARICOM
countries. Total sales volume for all processing operations was estimated at about 7,000
metric tonnes with a value of TT$105 million. Total value-added for this sub-sector was
estimated at about TT$48.1M 37 . Employment generated by processing operations is
estimated at 1225 persons. Due to the large number of temporary/ seasonal operations during
the study period, the actual output from processing operations may have been underestimated.
Since 2004, many of the plants have had to limit there operations on have closed down due to the
unavailability of supply from the local market. 38
4.1.2.4 Retail Component & International Trade
Fish landed at sites around the country are generally purchased by wholesale buyers who either
transport the catch to a refrigerated warehouse, processing plant, wholesale fish market,
supermarket, or to a chain of retail vendors. Some buyers supply hotels and restaurants. There
are an estimated 70 buyers operating in Trinidad and the operation generates employment for
approximately 210 persons. There is no formal system for the monitoring of operations related
to marketing and distribution, the data provided is therefore a rough estimation.
There are three wholesale fish markets in Trinidad managed by the National Agricultural
Marketing Development Company (NAMDEVCO). In Tobago, the major markets are in
Scarborough, Buccoo, Plymouth and Charlotteville. Fish enters the markets either from fishing
vessels that land their catch at the market or from wholesale buyers who may have purchased
fish from several landing sites. The fish is then sold to retail vendors and restaurants. The
number of retail vendors who operate in the country is not known with any certainty but it is
estimated that there are at least 200 roadside vendors and another 150 who sell out of the retail
markets. A survey of commodity utilization in the hotel and restaurant trade in Tobago 39 ,
estimated that TT$7.4 million was spent on the purchase of 138 metric tonnes of seafood.
Information on value-added and sales from seafood is unavailable. Information on sales of
locally produced seafood in supermarkets was also unavailable, however, sales of imported,
37

Central Statistical Office, 1999, 2000


Per. Comm. D. Ramsaroop, Seafood Express, 2005
39
Kallicharan, M., 1998, Survey of seafood consumption in the hotel and restaurant trade in 1998
38

50

processed fish and fish products were recorded at TT$40.5 million 40 . The throughput of fish and
fish products in the sector in represented in the figure below 41 .
Exports of locally produced fish and fishery products were estimated at 4000 tonnes valued at
TT$62 million in 2000. Average annual exports between 1997 and 2003 are estimated at 5,370
tonnes and valued at TT$58 million. Between 1997 and 2003 average annual exports ranged
from 2,150 tonnes (2001) to 10,060 tonnes (1997). Annual value of exports ranged between
TT$28 million (2001) and TT$76 million (1998) over the same period. Processed fish and
shellfish account for between 32% and 68% by weight and 42% to 56% by value of total exports
in any given year. Snappers, groupers, seatrout, dolphinfish, tuna and shrimp account for the
bulk of exports of identified species.
4.1.2.5 Aquaculture
Aquaculture in Trinidad and Tobago has traditionally operated at the subsistence level and
commercial food fish production has been marked by numerous unsuccessful ventures.
Aquaculture has not been developed to its full potential and the development of a national policy
on aquaculture has been identified as an important initiative to be pursued by the government. In
1999, 57 aquaculture operations were identified of which 43 were subsistence or small-scale
farmers of cascadura (Hoplosternum littorale). Tilapia production was not practiced on a wide
scale even though some farmers have attempted polyculture with the species.
The ornamental fish industry has a longer history than fish production for consumption and there
are an estimated 20 producers who rear several exotic and indigenous species and eight
exporters. A significant quantity of the ornamental trade is local however there is a great demand
for indigenous freshwater fish and exotics on the export market, mainly the CARICOM countries
and the USA. Exports of ornamentals are the only economically important component of the
aquaculture sector. Ornamental fish exports for 1999/2000 had an estimated value of
US$610,000. Seventy two per cent of the ornamental fish exported for this period were local
species with exotic species contributing to the remainder of exports. Employment generated by
the ornamental fish trade is estimated at 64 persons.

40
41

Central Statistical Office, 1999, 2000 data on imports


From Kuruvilla et al, 2002

51

Table 3: Sales volume and employment for the Fisheries Sub-Sectors (from Kuruvilla et al,
2002).
TYPE OF COMMERCIAL
ACTIVITY/PRODUCTS

TOTAL
SALES
VOLUM
E

(F) 1. INPUT INDUSTRY


Fishing Boats
46

UNIT

TOTAL SALES
VALUE
(TURNOVER)
LOCAL
US$M
$$

TOTAL
ADDED
VALUE

1.7M

.3

9 (4 major, 5
minor)

(15)

3M

.5

3 (included
below)

7M

1.1

15 (10
major, 5
minor others
incidental)
-

34

160

Engine parts/fishing
gear & equipment

N/a

Numbers of
boat
engines
N/a

Other (gear repair,


engine/ boat repair,
part-time)
TOTAL SUBSECTOR

N/a

N/a

(.6M)

(.1M
)

12.3M

2M

26 M

4.2
M
9.2
M
2.5
M

(F) 2. CAPTURE FISHERIES / HARVESTING


Trawl fishery
1,734
Mt
(shrimp & fish)
Artisanal fishery
6,767
Mt
(Trinidad)
Artisanal fishery
2831
Mt
(Tobago)

Assumes fishing industry applies for


waivers on all sales. Sales are
predominantly for artisanal vessels.
Employment estimated
Boat engines are imported,
suppliers included in firms that
supply engine parts.
Includes fishing gear, engine parts,
fuel and oil, fishing equipment

(25)

Estimated

24 (14
major, 10
minor)

80

CSO data (1999/2000) imports of


engines and parts valued at
US$2M (TT$12M) (for entire
marine sector), fishing gear at
US$0.5M (TT$2.8M)

114

279

1106

2212

314

1009

30 M

4.8
M

36

108

(300)

Estimated

128.7
M

20.8
M

1570

3908

No. of fish

3.8M

0.6
M

8 (3 major, 5
minor)

64

3.5

Mt

0.1M

Number of employees includes


estimated numbers of collectors of
wild stocks and suppliers to
exporters.
Fish for breeding purposes

200,0
00

No. of
fingerlings

0.3M

(4)

Production of tilapia fingerlings for


1999.
Estimated

2693

219,2
10

Ornamental fish
trade (imports)
Hatchery production

Mt

14,02
5

Mt

57 M

REMARKS

Fisheries Division, Landings and


Revenue Statistics for 1999/2000
Estimate of total landings for
Tobago, (Mohammed, 1994) raised
for 2000 estimate for flyingfish fleet
(Potts, 2000)
Estimated

Semi-industrial fleet
(Trinidad and
Tobago)
Other
employment(parttime, jostlers, pull up
nets, boats,
engines)
TOTAL SUBSECTOR
(F) 3. AQUACULTURE
Ornamental fish
trade (exports)

TOTAL SUBSECTOR

TOTAL #
OF
EMPLOYE
ES

Numbers of
fishing
boats

Boat Engines

Fish feed (ration


and fertilizer) and
supplies
Food fish production

# OF
INDEPENDENT
OPERATORS/F
IRMS

15.7M

12.5

Mt

0.1M

4.3M

0.6
M

14

76

52

Average for 1999 and 2000 from full


time commercial operators.

TYPE OF COMMERCIAL
ACTIVITY/PRODUCTS

TOTAL
SALES
VOLUM
E

UNIT

TOTAL SALES
VALUE
(TURNOVER)
LOCAL
US$M
$$

(F) 4. PROCESSING
Medium-sized plant

4,200

Mt

63.5M

10.2
M

Small plant

1540

Mt

23.1M

3.7
M

Temporary
/seasonal
operations
Other (part time,
cleaning/ peeling of
fish/ shrimp,
packing/loading)
TOTAL SUBSECTOR

(1200)

Mt

(18M)

(2.9
M)

6940

Mt

(F) 5. MARKETING & DISTRIBUTION


Wholesale buyers
12,62
Mt
3

TOTAL
ADDED
VALUE

34.4M
US$5.6
M
7.7M
US$1.2
M
(6M)
US$1M

# OF
INDEPENDENT
OPERATORS/F
IRMS

TOTAL #
OF
EMPLOYE
ES

296

11

209

55

(220)

Employment, sales volume and


value estimated

(500)

Estimated

REMARKS

104.6
M

16.8
M

48.1M
US$7.8
M

73 (55 are
temporary/
seasonal)

1225

Volume of processed product


entering local sales unrecorded.

126M

20.3
.M

75

225

150 (retail)
70(wholesal
e)
-

220

90% of domestic production is


handled by wholesale buyers/
processing plant purchasers
No estimate available for Tobago

Markets (Wholesale
and retail)

2876

Mt

32M

5.2
M

Hotel/Restaurant

138

Mt

7.1M

Imports

(3870)

Mt

44M

Exports

6137

Mt

70M

Other retail vending,


supermarkets etc
TOTAL SUBSECTOR
TOTAL FISHERIES
SECTOR

9,946

Mt

35,59
0
-

Mt

118.3
M
397.4
M
647M

1.2
M
7.1
M
11.3
M
19.1
M
64.1
M
104
M

(*) exchange rate used 6.2TT = 1US

53

1998 survey figure for Tobago


(Kallicharan, 1998)

(725)

*Employment accounted for under


processing
Includes Supermarket sales of
processed imports

*(as for
processors)
300

800

595

1245

2276 (Firms
and
independen
t operators)

6054

Figure 6: Throughput of Fish Production (Mt) for 1999/2000 (from Kuruvilla et al, 2002).

54

4.2

Recent Developments In The Industry

Development of an Offshore Fishing Fleet

The semi-industrial multi-gear fleet is capable of deploying a range of fishing gears and targeting
different fisheries. These vessels operate within the territorial waters, the EEZ and on the high
seas. Vessels in this category are 10-23 metres in length, generally constructed of fibreglass and
powered by inboard diesel engines. They may also be equipped with hydraulic winches. The
semi-industrial vessels are outfitted with Geographic Positioning Systems (GPS), ice holds and
mechanized fishing equipment and fishing trips can last as long as 10 to 15 days. This fleet uses
a variety of gears to target snappers and groupers, dolphin fish, tunas and swordfish. Most of the
catch is exported.

Growth of a Sport Fishery

Although sport or recreational fishing has occurred for many years, the potential for growth of
this activity into a commercial opportunity has grown with increased economic wealth locally
and regionally, and with tourism development in Tobago. There are now eight fishing
tournaments held annually, with two international tournaments based in Tobago, and small
charter fishing operations catering to predominantly tourists or sports fishing interests. The
development of this activity is severely hampered by the lack of basic facilities to service the
vessels 42 .

Growth In Processing Capability & Exports

The processing and export capability of the sector has grown over the past ten years, however,
most plants limit their activities to primary processing and the export of chilled or frozen fish.
The plants rely predominantly on domestic landings for the supply of raw material, and some of
the smaller plants may operate seasonally. Larger plants may purchase fish from the National
Fisheries Company or import from within CARICOM, particularly from Guyana. The recent
decline in the supply of raw material from the local fisheries sector, and the Taiwanese fleet has
affected the operations of processing plants. A number of plants have had to increase imports of
raw material in order to maintain their operations. 43

42
43

Pers. Comm. S. Johnson, Trinidad and Tobago Game Fishing Association, 2005
Pers. Comm. D. Lanser, Trinidad Seafoods and D. Ramsaroop, Seafood Express, 2005

55

Quality Control Requirements For International Trade

The fishery sector must conform to international quality control standards in the preparation of
fish and fish products if it is to develop a successful export market. The European Union (EU)
and the United States require that strict quality control systems are in place for all plants
producing fish or fish products for export to their markets. While the US Government enforces
these measures through importers in the US, the EU places responsibility on the competent
authorities in the exporting countries. The Fish and Fishery Product Regulations (1998) 44
specify the requirements for handling, storage, processing and transporting fish, however there
are no comprehensive systems in place to ensure compliance. Trinidad and Tobago has not been
eligible to export to the EU since 1999.

Lease Of The National Fisheries Company (NFC) To A Foreign Company

In 1995, the National Fisheries Company and the fisheries port occupied by the company were
leased for a period of thirty (30) years, to Fisheries International Seafood Handlers Ltd., a
Taiwanese owned company as a base and transshipment port for a fleet of large scale, industrial
tuna fishing vessels. The site now supports two tuna fleets and a tuna processing plant. The
processing plant operates under export processing zone (EPZ) status and the product is shipped
to foreign markets.
The Government of Trinidad and Tobago is required to fulfill certain Port State Obligations
and to implement data and information collection systems to provide an annual detailed report on
the activities of the fishing fleet, the port and the cannery to the International Commission for the
Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT).
The lease of this site to foreign fishing interests has been a source of great concern to the
local fishing industry for the following reasons:
1.

44

Prior to the leasing of the site, it served as the main port for the servicing of
the local semi-industrial and industrial fishing fleet and the landing site for
the catch from these vessels. The local fleet now based at sites in Trinidad
and in Tobago lacks the appropriate infrastructure to support vessel
servicing or maintenance, or meet quality assurance standards for fish
exports. The displaced industrial trawl fleet that now occupies a small area
adjacent to this site under informal land tenure arrangements, is greatly

Food and Drugs Act Section 25, Chapter 30:01

56

concerned about proposed coastal developments that may displace them


from the area.

2.

The bycatch from the tuna fishing operations were a source of raw material
for local processing plants but the company is now processing much of this
fish in-house and is competing for sales on the local market.

3.

The activities of the two main tuna fleets which number approximately 93
industrial vessels in 2000 45 , are perceived by the local fishing industry and by
other countries in the region to be the cause of depletion of the fisheries
resources on which they base their livelihood, although these vessels do not
fish within the maritime waters of Trinidad and Tobago.

The Impact Of Fishing On The Environment

Fishing techniques perceived to be damaging to a resource or the environment may be prohibited


from entry into certain markets. In 1993, the US Government required trawl vessels from
Trinidad and Tobago to be fitted with Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs). Shrimp exports are now
permitted based on an annual certification process. Turtles are protected under the Convention
on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) to which Trinidad and Tobago is a
signatory. There are concerns about the reported high incidental capture of turtles in the gillnet
fishery of the north-east of Trinidad, and there have been recent consultations on the need to find
alternatives to this activity.
Trinidad and Tobago is also participating in a FAO coordinated global initiative on the reduction
of bycatch in tropical shrimp trawl fisheries through the introduction management measures that
may include the use of bycatch reduction devices (BRDs).

Industry Consolidation & Representation

There have been initiatives within the fishing industry to consolidate the numerous industry
organizations and associations into a representative body. The National Organisation of
Fishing Associations and Allied Cooperatives (NOFACS) achieved limited success. More
recently, the All Tobago Fisherfolk Association (ATFA) has represented the interests of
fishing organisations in Tobago, and there is a currently a move to develop another national

45

Fisheries Division records, 2000

57

body. An environmental NGO, Fishermen and Friends of the Sea (FFOS) have attempted to
represent certain interests in the fisheries sector.
There is a Monitoring and Advisory Committee on the Fisheries of Trinidad and Tobago made
up of public sector representatives and members of the fishing industry, and chaired by the
Director of Fisheries. This Committee reports to the Minister responsible for fisheries. There
are concerns however that the structure and operations of the Committee are public sector driven
and do little to strengthen capability within the industry. At a national Consultation organised by
the Committee there were proposals for improvements in the operations of the Committee, and
for the formation of a Fishing Industry Board 46 to represent the interests of the industry and
strengthen participation in fisheries management.

International & Regional Collaboration In Fisheries Management

Trinidad and Tobago participates in the work of international and regional groupings in the
management of shared fisheries resources. As members of ICCAT since 1999, data on local
catches of tunas and related species are submitted to the Commission annually, along with
reports on the activities of foreign tuna fleets that use our ports. The fishing industry must
adhere to catch quotas and minimum size regulations for a number of species.
On a regional level, this country participates in FAO coordinated regional working groups on
shrimp and groundfish, and flyingfish. These groups analyse data from collective fishing
activities and determine the most appropriate management measures for the shared fisheries.
Participating countries are expected to implement and adhere to these measures.

A Common Fisheries Regime for the Caribbean

Trinidad and Tobago, as a member of CARICOM participates in the work of the Caribbean
Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM). The CARICOM Heads at the Fourteenth InterSessional Meeting in February 2003 endorsed proposals on the imperative of elaborating a
Common Fisheries Regime (CFR). In March, the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism
(CRFM) was officially launched and at the inaugural meeting of the Forum that determines its
work, it was decided that it would take responsibility for this Regime, the main elements of
which include:

46

Fisheries Division, 2001, National Consultation on the Monitoring and Advisory Committee on the Fisheries of
Trinidad and Tobago.

58

i.
ii.
iii.

The acceptance of a common fisheries policy and strategy;


Demarcation of a common fisheries zone;
A regional organization for administering, implementing and enforcing the policy.

4.3

An Analysis Of Key Problems

Over Fishing Of The Marine Resources

Research findings suggest that the coastal marine resources are either heavily exploited or over
exploited. There does not appear to be any potential for expansion of the coastal fishery for
shrimp and groundfish, or the coastal pelagic fishery for carite and kingfish (Appendix 1). There
are problems of incidental capture of non target species in both of these fisheries and a high level
of discards of juvenile finfish particularly in the artisanal and semi-industrial trawl fishery.
There may be potential for expansion in the fishery for flyingfish and the associated species but
this would need to be carefully monitored as there is the potential for wide annual fluctuations in
abundance of the flyingfish. The presence of fishing vessels operating illegally in the fishery
will have to be considered in any analysis.
There is a general lack of information on the offshore fishery, in terms of both the fishing
activity and the status of the resources. There is evidence of a decline in the abundance of the
offshore Snapper/ Grouper fishery based on a few local studies and reports on the Venezuelan
snapper fleet. The past history of illegal fishing in Guyanese waters by national vessels and the
interest in a fishing access agreement with Guyana for these species add to this concern. There
are limitations to the development of the longline fishery for certain species but there may be
potential for others. A better understanding of the economics of this fishery is required if
investment is to be promoted.
For these export oriented fisheries, an appropriate landing site is important to facilitate the
necessary quality control procedures, and to fulfill national obligations on reporting to local and
international management bodies such as the ICCAT.

59

Other fisheries that may be important, such as the fishery for Lobsters and some of the pelagic
species that are valuable but for which little information exists, must be examined and a
comprehensive status report produced.

Open Access To Marine Resources

In Trinidad and Tobago, an open access regime pertains for the local fisheries. Any local vessel
may enter any fishery and catch and land as much fish as they are capable of doing. As there are
no controls in place, the environment is one of competition, rather than management. An open
access regime provides no long term security to the participants in the fishery and creates a
situation where the emphasis is on taking as much of the resource as possible before it is over
fished. Additionally, an open access regime undervalues the resource. This is a concept that
would be considered unacceptable for natural resources such as oil, gas or timber.
Other factors such as the competitive and sometimes negative interactions between fishing fleets
and the problems of illegal fishing are symptoms of the lack of a management structure for the
fisheries and the inadequate surveillance and enforcement capability. These factors create an
uncertain environment for long term investment and discourage conservation-oriented and
sustainable use practices.
The adoption of a licensing regime which essentially implements management plans based on
the best available information and an established consultative process specific to each fishery,
would in effect inform the fishing industry and potential investors of the Governments intentions,
and the initiatives that would be promoted for medium and long term investment.

Lack Of Adequate Data & Analyses

A lack of accurate verifiable data on the fisheries sector, continues to pose a problem in the
development of strategic interventions. Data are available on the harvesting of fish, the fishing
fleet, gear and catches from a number of sources, including vessel census and ongoing
established data collection programmes. Other aspects of the industry are less well described.
There is generally poor coverage of economic data for the sector with few established reporting
systems to adequately monitor the economic performance of the fishing fleets, wholesale and
retail sales, and regional and international trade. These data must be obtained from central
monitoring systems such as the National Agricultural Marketing and Development Corporation

60

(NAMDEVCO) and the Central Statistical Office (CSO), where the data is consolidated in a
format to meet the needs of the specific agency and may be of limited use to fisheries managers.
The systems for data collection and landings estimation are not standardised for the fisheries in
Trinidad and in Tobago and there is no formal collaborative structure in place. This often
presents difficulties in the calculation of national landings and value statistics and generally in
reporting at the national level.
Landings and value data are not comprehensive for the harvesting component of the fishing
industry, it is patchy or missing entirely for some fleets. Coverage of landings in Tobago is poor
and there are concerns about the confidentiality of the data collected. 47 There are no officially
designated landing sites and statistical coverage is limited to the main artisanal landings sites.
Data from these sites are used to estimate total landings for all sites. There is a lack of statistical
data on the semi-industrial and industrial fishing vessels due in part to lack of coverage of the
landing sites, and to the unpredictable times at which the vessels land. A logbook system and
observer programme is still to be instituted for the industrial fleet to cover the period of at-sea
activities. The existing legal framework does not make mandatory, the submission of data by the
industry to the authorities.

Outdated, Inadequate & Inconsistent Legislation

The existing fisheries legislation is inadequate as a legal basis for a modern national fisheries
management system. It is incomplete as to its geographical coverage, the Fisheries Act, 1916,
covering only the waters up to the outer limits of the 12 mile territorial sea and not the EEZ. The
Archipelagic Waters and Exclusive Economic Zone Act of 1986, covers the EEZ as well as the
territorial sea and archipelagic waters, but basically applies only to foreign fishing operation.
There are therefore no controls over local fishing operations in the EEZ and beyond.
The existing legislation is also incomplete as to its substantive coverage. The Fisheries Act
provides only for rudimentary controls so far as fisheries management is concerned. It provides
for controls over the type and mesh size of fishing nets, for closed seasons and areas, but does
not provide any legal basis for the licensing of fishing vessels or for the present administrative
practice of registering fishermen and fishing engines. While the Archipelagic Waters and
Exclusive Economic Zone Act of 1986, is more comprehensive in its scope, it is, as noted above,
basically designed to deal only with the issue of foreign fishing. There are however, no
regulations in place in support of fisheries management under this Act.
47

Pers. Comm. E. Louis, Tobago Sea Products, 2005

61

The Fisheries Act is also responsible for the management of fresh water fisheries resources, but.
there are no regulations specific to the management of fresh water fisheries.
Inconsistencies in policy are also apparent in the Protection of Turtle and Turtle Eggs
Regulations which provides for an open season on the capture of marine turtles in conflict with
regulations under the Conservation of Wildlife Act (1958) which provide for a complete ban on
the capture of turtles in accordance with the national position adopted on accession to the
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). The Fisheries Act does
however require, that the nets of all semi-industrial and industrial trawl vessels are fitted with
Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs), but does not prohibit the capture of turtles by gillnets.

Limited Surveillance & Enforcement Capability

The Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard monitors compliance with fisheries regulations on behalf
of the Fisheries Division. This includes inspections of Turtle Excluder Devices (TED) on
industrial trawlers and surveillance of offshore areas for illegal foreign fishing. The
geographical area covered by these surveillance activities is often inadequate. The Fisheries
Division is currently without the institutional capability to effectively conduct surveillance and
monitoring activities at landing sites and other onshore or coastal sites but efforts are being made
to set up a Unit to carry out these duties.

Illegal Foreign Fishing & Piracy

There are ongoing problems of illegal fishing by foreign vessels from Venezuela, Barbados and
occasionally Guyana. Venezuelan longline and handline vessels fish off the north and east of
Trinidad, and Barbadian ice boats move into the area north of Tobago during the flyingfish
season. The limitations to the national surveillance and enforcement capability, have also put
local fishermen at the risk of piracy, resulting in the loss of boats, engines and fishing gear, and
occasionally the loss of life.

Inadequate Stakeholder Representation

The issue of stakeholder representation and participation in the management process is crucial to
the success of the fishing industry. A system must be devised to ensure industry representation
and accountability, if necessary with the assistance of more experienced agencies or persons. In
addition, a formal structure for industry participation in decision-making must be written into the
62

legislation. Major landing sites should provide office space or meeting areas to encourage
greater dialogue at the community level. Stakeholders must exercise a greater degree of control
over the industry and undertake more responsibility for their actions.

Institutional Structure Inadequate For Development Of The Sector

The existing systems within the public sector remain structured for a fishing industry that was
viewed as subsistence level, basically artisanal and rural. This is evident in the status of the
existing legislation, the provision of infrastructure and the existing incentive schemes available
to the sector. Since the passing of Act no. 24 of 1986, under which the EEZ was claimed, the
public sector has not effectively re-tooled to support the more business-oriented initiatives
required for investment in the offshore fisheries. This is particularly evident in the paucity of
economic information available and the lack of emphasis on analytical approaches to the
development of the sector.
The responsible agencies often lack the resources to support meaningful participation in regional
and international negotiations of fisheries and trade agreements.

Lack Of Framework For Integrated Coastal Area Management

Commercial fisheries are only one user of the wider marine environment, alongside recreational
activities (including fishing), tourism, oil and gas extraction, agriculture, settlements, and habitat
and biodiversity protection. The fisheries sector is often overlooked in the planning of coastal
developments that affect the marine environment and access to traditional fishing grounds and
landing sites. A strategy is needed to integrate fisheries within a framework of broader coastal
area management. Focal points of artisanal fisheries activities should be designated and these
sites developed with appropriate infrastructure and services, and zoned for non-interference from
other coastal development

Landing Sites & Infrastructure Inadequate & Sub-Standard 48

1.

Ports / Landing Sites

48

C. Nurse, 2004 A Summary of Fisheries Infrastructure in Trinidad and Tobago with respect to Fish Handling,
Landing and Storage Facilities (prepared for the Fish and Fish Processing Industry Team).

63

Artisanal fishing vessels land at about 65 sites around Trinidad and 32 sites in Tobago.
The landing sites range from beaches with simple structures for storage of equipment to
large permanent buildings with areas for maintenance and repair of gear and engines,
storage of equipment, parking of vehicles and market facilities. In 1999, facilities existed
at 25 sites in Trinidad and 10 in Tobago.
Semi-industrial and industrial vessels operate out of a few major sites on the west coast
of Trinidad. There is little infrastructure provided to accommodate the mooring, repairs,
servicing or offloading of these vessels. The industrial trawl fleet is based mainly at one
compound in Sea Lots where there is no purpose built infrastructure to accommodate
these vessels. The Fisheries Division maintains twenty eight (28) landing facilities in
Trinidad and the Marine Affairs Division of the Tobago House of Assembly maintains
nine facilities in Tobago. Additionally, some facilities are maintained by the Regional
Corporations. NAMDEVCO is responsible for the markets at Port of Spain and Orange
Valley.
Cold storage facilities are absent at most of these sites, and if present, they are nonfunctional.
An evaluation of thirty-six (36) landing sites in Trinidad conducted by the competent
Authority for quality control of food products 49 in 1999 indicated that extensive
refurbishing is required at most landing sites in order to comply with national and
international food safety requirements and to ensure the maintenance of sanitary
standards.
2.

Fish Markets
The Wholesale Fish Markets are also used as landing sites for fishing vessels and for
vending and the retail sale of fish. The conditions at all the wholesale markets are
unsanitary and do not meet national or international food safety requirements. Ice
manufacture, freezing and cold storage facilities are lacking.
In addition,
environmentally acceptable waste management systems are required to deal with the
volume of fish passing through the system on a daily basis.

3.

49

Freezing & Cold Storage

Teemull, S., 1999. Chemistry, Food and Drugs Report on Evaluation of thirty six fish landing sites.

64

There are no functional freezing and cold storage facilities at landing sites and the
markets are organized for the sale of only chilled fish. In Tobago the NIPDEC cold store
is accessible for the freezing and cold storage of both un-processed and processed fish.
The freezing and storage capacity of this facility is however, considered to be inadequate
to cater for storage during the height of the fishing season. In Trinidad there are several
public cold storage facilities that are not however, dedicated to the storage of fish and
fishery products, and the potential for losses is great.
The absence of chilled and cold storage facilities at the airport and sea ports is a major
constraint to ensuring quality exports. The absence of such facilities creates a situation
where fish for export may remain un-refrigerated for some time prior to loading and
transport. The provision of chilled and cold stores facilities at major ports of entry is a
primary consideration in providing the quality assurance that is required in the market
place.
4.

Fish Processing Plants


There are eighteen (18) processing plants located in industrial estates or residential
developments. There may be Public Health issues to be addressed with respect to the
latter, especially if the facility is an annex to a residence. All the plants have ice
manufacturing capability and freezer and cold storage facilities. The disposal of waste
emanating from processing plants is an area requiring consideration, the processing of
fish utilizes water and produces considerable liquid waste and this could have
environmental implications in terms of disposal, especially in areas where recreation or
tourism is important.

Quality Assurance
Requirements

Systems

Inadequate

For

Local

&

International

Existing systems are inadequate to meet local health and safety requirements and do not conform
to international standards. The 1998 Fish and Fish Product Regulations are geared to meeting
the requirements of international trade, they are not however adequately enforced and Trinidad
and Tobago has not been able to access markets in the EU. The regulations do not provide the
necessary controls for products prepared for the domestic market, which is currently regulated
under the Public Health Ordinances.

Marketing & Sales Structure Inadequate & Sub Standard


65

Fish is landed at sites all around Trinidad and Tobago, where the facilities may often be
inadequate for proper storage and handling. Distribution systems are not well organized and the
fish may be transported to several sites or markets before it is sold to the consumer. There are no
systems in place to ensure a regular supply and the market may be subject to shortfalls in supply
or gluts during certain seasons.

Outlook For The Future Of The Fisheries Sector

4.4

KEY DRIVERS IN THE DEVELOPMENT AND GROWTH OF THE FISHERIES SECTOR


The key drivers affecting the development and growth of the fisheries sector are both internal
and external. Internal factors are those over which there is control through national policies and
actions. External factors over which there are no controls may also affect the industry. The
industry may respond positively if the appropriate management policies and systems are in place
and if the industry is geared for competitive challenges.
Internal or domestic factors
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Domestic demand for fish


Quality Assurance (QA) Standards.
Competitiveness and developments in technology within the industry.
Proper fisheries management practices and fisheries production.
The state of the marine environment.

External factors
1.
2.
3.
4.

Demand for fish regionally and internationally.


International QA Standards.
Global Climate Change
International Conservation Agreements.

Table 4: Future Scenarios for the Fisheries Sector.


Drivers
Worst Case

Scenarios/ Outlook
Baseline

66

Best-Case

Drivers
Domestic
demand for fish

Quality
Assurance
Standards

Worst Case
Natural increase in demand
due to increase in population,
economic prosperity

Scenarios/ Outlook
Baseline
Some increase in consumption
resulting from national
promotional initiatives

No change in standards for


domestic industry

Legislation amended for


domestic industry

Infrastructure does not meet


basic standards to ensure QA

Establishment of QA inspection
service/ training programme

QA Inspection service remains


underdeveloped

Programmes promoting QA
compliance in industry and
awareness in population

Fish handling and post harvest


practices remain poor with high
wastage

Technological
developments
and
competitiveness

Lack of QA compliance by
industry in processing and
retailing of fish and fish
products
Little technological upgrade in
the industry
Opportunities lost as sector
remains a primary producer
and increase in imports of value
added products
Offshore resources
inaccessible to majority of
domestic fishing fleet
Industry declines as
employment increases in other
sectors
Rural communities increasingly
dependent upon urban
employment

Development of QA compliant
pilot fishing port infrastructure
and market facilities in key
locations
Improvements in QA measures
within the sector
Industry becomes better
organized and promotes its
interests
Harvesters and processors
update technology and improve
opportunities, economic
efficiency and product quality
New products appear on the
market and generate additional
employment within the sector
Developments in aquaculture
industry as products are tested
on the local market
Growth in employment
opportunities in coastal
communities

67

Best-Case
Domestic demand for fish and fish
products high due to :
Health benefits;
Demand from school s
and other institutions;
growing restaurant and
hotel trade
Domestic legislative requirements
on par with international
requirements
Fish inspection service operational
Designated landing sites and fish
markets meet national and
international standards
Compliance with standards
throughout sector

Fishing fleet highly mobile and


fishing operations economically
efficient and profitable
A variety of value-added products
available reducing wastage of raw
material and offering alternative
employment opportunities
Growth in regional and international
niche market export opportunities
raise the economic profile of the
sector
Aquaculture becomes a viable
source of raw material to the sector
New development policies and
alternative job opportunities in
coastal communities

Drivers
Proper fisheries
management
practices and
fisheries
production

Worst Case
No advancement in fisheries
management policies
Legislation continues to be
outdated and unsupportive of
fisheries management
Limited institutional capability to
ensure monitoring and
compliance piracy, poor
fishing practices increase

The state of the


marine
environment

Lack of participation and


support from industry for
fisheries management
Impact of pollution in inshore
areas on coastal fisheries
Limited development on a
coastal management policy
Coastal marine areas affected
by industrial and urban pollution
and tourism development
causing decline in fisheries
populations and concerns
about QA in coastal fisheries
Poor fishing practices result in
high proportion of immature fish
in the catches and high
incidence of non-target
protected species (turtles)

Scenarios/ Outlook
Baseline
Industry responds to revision of
management framework based
on approved fisheries policy
Fisheries management
legislation updated and fisheries
management plans developed
with support from the fishing
industry
Strengthened monitoring
capability protects industry from
losses due to piracy and theft,
and supports sound fisheries
management practices

Best-Case
Fisheries management framework
and legislation implemented, and
fisheries management plans
regularly updated
Active participation by the fishing
industry in the management
process and self-regulation
promoted by stakeholder groups
Contribution of aquaculture to fish
production gains in relative
importance as land use policies
support investment opportunities

Aquaculture development
restricted through lack of policies
on land use and water supply,
and limited investment
Fisheries sector still
marginalized in coastal
management planning initiatives
resulting in loss of fishing
grounds, and decline in coastal
fisheries through impact of
pollution and activities of other
sectors.
Increasing awareness of impact
of poor fishing practices and
examination of alternative
technology

Mitigation of impacts of coastal


development through
representation of fisheries sector
interests in multi-sectoral planning.
Monitoring and enforcement of
regulations governing effluent
discharge and operations in the
energy sector
Improved fishing technology and
practices reduces negative impact
of fishing on immature fish and
non-target species

OUTCOME
Worst Case Scenario

Decline in domestic production through failure to create and implement a formal


management framework for the sector.

68

Coastal resources over-fished, offshore resource inaccessible to local fleet

Fish and fish products make up a smaller part of the national diet because they are less
affordable and less available.

Much of the domestic demand must be met through imports. The national food import
bill grows.

Fish and fishery products from the local industry vary greatly in quality due to the lack of
QA standards. The population is placed at risk by the potential of contaminants in fish
tissues resulting from polluted coastal environment.

Displacement of fishermen due to expansion of the oil and gas / tourism sectors resulting
in a destruction of the fisheries habitat and loss of access to traditional fishing grounds.

Coastal communities formerly dependent on fishing as an important source of income


turn to other sectors seeking employment where available, or endure greater economic
hardship. Employment generated by the processing and retail components of the industry
is lost.

Baseline Scenario

A formal policy for the fisheries sector prepared in collaboration with the fishing
industry, guides the development of a resource management framework and creates
optimism about investment in the sector.

The industry gears for greater participation in a restructured resource management


framework through efforts at unification and elected representation.

Infrastructure developed through pilot schemes sets new standards for QA in marketing
and retailing of fish and fishery products and becomes a focus for developmental
activities and awareness programmes.

Infrastructure development in support of offshore fishing supports interest in investment.

Best-Case Scenario

69

Increase in domestic production due to improved post harvest handling, inputs from
offshore fishery, and stabilization of coastal resources

Good quality fish and a variety of fish products enter the domestic market from a diverse,
vibrant, and economically viable fishing industry.

Peaks and troughs in fisheries production due to environmental factors.

A resource management framework supported by active monitoring and implementation


of regulations, and increasing self-regulation within the fishing industry stabilizes
production in the coastal fisheries

Supplies of fish enter the market from new and diverse sources such as the offshore
fisheries and aquaculture farms.

Fisheries sector infrastructure promotes a good quality product and provides for the
development of ancillary activities related to fish marketing, distribution and product
development.

Fish processing plants produce high quality product to service domestic, institutional
demand and the restaurant and hotel trade. Products are exported throughout the region
and to niche markets internationally.

Fishing and associated activities represent a viable source of income for coastal
communities, and integrated coastal planning programmes ensure the future of these
communities in a multi-sectoral environment.

70

SECTION

FIVE
A Strategic Plan For The Fishing Industry
5.1

The Vision

To be a modern, profitable, sustainable and environmentally mindful fish and fish processing
industry.

Elements Of The Vision


5.1.1

A MODERN FISHERIES SECTOR

Training
A modern fisheries sector requires trained participants at all levels of operation, including
experienced and efficient fishermen, processors, and retailers who understand and are committed
to following correct practices in the harvesting, handling and sale of fish and fisheries products,
and fisheries managers and researchers who are trained and experienced in appropriate
management techniques.
Appropriate technology
The fisheries sector should use technology appropriate to its needs to ensure safe and efficient
practices at sea through the use of seaworthy vessels, reliable engines, equipment and
communications, and modern efficient fishing gear. These vessels should have access to landing
sites and mooring facilities that meet international standards for safety and hygiene.
Efficient system of marketing and infrastructure
The fish catches must be distributed through an efficient marketing and distribution system,
which minimizes waste through spoilage and ensures a good quality fish product for sale at both
local and export markets. Market infrastructure should be clean, hygienic and geared to the
handling of fish products, and markets should be well run in terms of storage or sale of fish
products.

71

Quality Assurance standards


The facilities for processing and trade in fish products should meet national and international
standards for quality assurance, ensuring that the final product is healthy to all consumers, and
well presented with the appropriate information and advice using modern and innovative
approaches to packaging and labeling.
Modern Legislative framework
The fishing industry should operate within a framework of modern legislation, and regulations,
and in collaboration with a public sector that is transparent, efficient, professional, and equitable
in its role as co-manager and service provider.
Recreational Potential
Recreational fishing and charter fishing especially in Tobago, have tourism potential, if
environmentally sound practices such as a catch and release are promoted. If restructured, some
landing sites/ markets could serve as sea side areas for socializing and purchasing prepared fish
meals (similar to Maracas vendors).
Partnerships
A successful fishing industry is one in which all components of the industry are represented in
the management and development of the sector. Partnerships must be formed between the
industry and the government agencies that provide services to the sector.
Public Benefit
Fish and fish products should be promoted as a healthy alternative to other foods and the public
should have access to a good quality, healthy and affordable food sold under hygienic conditions
in convenient locations.
5.1.2

A PROFITABLE FISHING INDUSTRY

The fishing industry should be well managed so that it offers a profitable source of investment
whether at the level of boat owner, processor, retailer, restaurant owner, or exporter of fish
products. In addition, the industry should provide decent living wages and conditions to those
employed in it, whether they are fishers, or employees in a plant or in the retail trade.
5.1.3

SUSTAINABILITY OF THE RESOURCES

A well managed fisheries sector requires that there are controls on fleet capacity, access to the
fisheries, and the use of sustainable fishing techniques and fishing gear. This may in addition

72

involve the introduction of management measures to protect the resources such as closed areas,
closed seasons and other practices. The management of the fisheries to ensure sustainability
must be based on the availability of reliable statistical information on catch and fishing effort and
other trends affecting the fish populations, and analyses of the impact of existing or proposed
management measures.
5.1.4

AN ENVIRONMENTALLY MINDFUL INDUSTRY

The fisheries sector must recognize that its survival is dependent upon the implementation of
environmentally sound practices that do not adversely affect either the fisheries resources or the
marine ecosystem. Therefore all practices from harvesting to retailing should ensure minimal
negative impact on the environment. Fishing techniques should be selective for commercially
viable species and sizes and should have minimal impact on other species and on the marine
ecosystem, boats and engines should be fuel efficient and non-polluting, and the landing,
processing and retailing of fish should be undertaken in conditions that provide for the proper
disposal of fish waste and waste water.

5.2

The Values

Profitable, innovative and competitive

High standards of quality

Resource conscious and environmentally responsible

Cohesive and collaborative

5.3

SWOT Analysis

STRENGTHS
1.

Geographical position:
a) Proximity to the resources of the Brazil-Guianas shelf, and the opportunity to
negotiate access to these fishing grounds/ or to purchase raw material for local plants.

73

b) Availability of cargo services to important regional and international markets North


America and other CARICOM countries in terms of air and sea shipping services.
c) Close proximity to major fishing markets.
2.

A wide variety of species available in Trinidad and Tobago waters: snappers, croakers,
grouper, carite, kingfish, tuna, cavalli, swordfish, bechine, blinch, cutlass fish, moonfish,
dolphin, marlin, shrimp, flying fish, shark and mullet.

3.

Low value currency: exchange rates make it attractive to other countries in business
decisions.

4.

Low energy costs.

5.

Capability to carry out Research and Development.

6.

Fish processing infrastructure in place

7.

Existence of a Fisheries training and development institute

WEAKNESSES
1.

Poor resource management


a)
Inadequate data and information base
b)
No management plan for the sector
c)
Outdated legislation and regulation
d)
Poor enforcement (Further development of this point is required)
N.B. Among other things the presence of foreign mother boats in Trinidad and
Tobago waters are contributing to the depleting of the resource.
e)
Non-compliance with regulations.
f)
Illegal fishing by foreign vessels and impact of large scale offshore fleets.

2.

Limited support for fishing communities, in terms of training in alternative employment


opportunities.

3.

Deficiencies in meeting international exporting standards for agriculture based products.

4.

Inadequate Infrastructure:

74

a)
b)
c)
d)

Lack of ports on the east and north coasts


Substandard landing facilities
Lack of refrigeration holding facilities at the airport
Poor standards in vessels:
i)
Deficient in the number of vessels required for extended stays, far out to
sea.
ii)
Deficiency in refrigeration/cold storage facilities on board many vessels.

5.

Inadequate labor force:


a) Fewer new recruits (sector seems to be unattractive to the younger generation)
b) The current labor force consists primarily of mature individuals.
c) Poor work ethic.

6.

Absence of inspection service, from point of landing to point of sale to consumer.

7.

Lack of political commitment to implement policies.

8.

Pollution affecting fish stocks in the Gulf of Paria and in Tobago.

9.

Lack of monitoring, control, surveillance (MCS).

10.

Lack of distribution of information on the industry.

11.

Lack of stakeholder involvement: Inadequate industry stakeholder involvement in


Government/Stakeholder Committee (FD): Stakeholders are not given the opportunity for
their input into the formation of regulations.

12.

Absence of national body representing fishing industry interests.

OPPORTUNITIES
1.

To expand processing facilities:


a)
Encourage Guyana and Venezuela to send raw fish to be processed in Trinidad
and Tobago because of their poor infrastructure. A recommendation can be made
to provide payment in US dollars, as an incentive to having their fish processed
locally.

75

2.

Niche markets:
a)
Central America because it may not have pelagic fish or some of our species.
b)
Potential in local markets offshore rigs, school feeding programs.
c)
Moving into higher value products such as convenience foods: targeting college
students, single parents, and career women. Examples include:
i)
Ready prepared meals
ii)
Breaded Fish.

3.

Further development of foreign market opportunities: (?)


a)
United States
b)
Canada
c)
Caribbean seasonal fishing
d)
Latin America
e)
EU

4.

5.

Aquaculture: Has the potential to:


a)
Increase supply of fish.
b)
Allow stocks to rest and replenish
c)
Look at the opportunity to use aquaculture to restock the resource.
Fish Shops: all items available to prepare a meal sold at the shops.

6.

Capability of Trinidad and Tobago to continue Research and Development.

7.

Opportunity for further development of recreational fisheries sub-sector and linkage


industries

THREATS
1.

Competition from other countries e.g. Guyana, South and Central America, where there is
cheap lower cost labor and abundant fish stocks.

2.

High labour costs locally.

3.

Inadequate freight services: limited space available.

4.

Pollution Gulf may become no fishing zone.

76

5.

Habitat destruction resulting affecting the replenishing the fish stock. Examples include
Mangroves in North and Central Trinidad and particularly the reefs in Tobago.

6.

FTAA could restrict our production of value added products. We are currently
protected by CARICOM but FTAA will allow our market to be flooded with products at
a cheaper price.

7.

Resource depletion Unregulated fishing activity result in artisanal, trawl and foreign
mother boats activities significantly affecting local fishery resources.

8.

Environmental and Food Safety issues:


a)
Has a ripple effect on other industries e.g. Tourism.
b)
Many of our species are susceptible to certain poisons.
c)
Methods of harvesting can be risky.
d)
Pollution control limited.
e)
Roadside vending: Vendors are not meeting international food safety standards.
They also have smaller overheads and can undercut prices.

9.

International Commissions that implement treaties: Impose quotas which limit our access
to stocks.

10.

Lack of surveillance - Foreign vessels can enter our territory and continue to fish.

11.

Dumping of products from developed markets onto Caribbean markets at low prices.

12.

Exposure to piracy while fishing in our waters.

13.

No concerted effort to promote the Trinidad and Tobagos products abroad: concessions
have been removed for export promotion.

5.4

Strategic Goals

Based on the foregoing information, the Fish and Fish Processing Industry Team endorses an
industry strategy that will enable the fisheries sector to utilize the resources available to it
through the declaration of the EEZ, and the opportunities presented by economic developments
77

in the country and the demand, both domestic and external for their products. The strategy
focuses on:

Ensuring that the natural resource base of the industry is not degraded by
unsustainable activities in the sector;

Realizing the potential for the development of the industry through appropriate
technology and infrastructure at all stages from harvesting to retail;

Promoting the formation of a governance structure that takes full advantage of


the expertise available in both the private sector and public sector, in planning and
implementing measures to develop the industry;

Promoting the importance of the Fisheries sector in the national agenda and
ensuring support and representation in national integrated coastal planning and
management.

The strategic goals that have been identified to move the sector forward, reflect the collective
views and considerable experience of the members of the team from operating within the
industry; the findings presented in the review of studies on the marine fisheries presented in
August, 2004; views expressed at national consultations and meetings with specific target groups
on the draft Strategic Plan in 2005 and; the strategic direction endorsed by the Team following
analysis and discussion of the available information.
These goals can be summarized as follow:

Sustainable utilization of the resources

A profitable, competitive and innovative sector

A governance framework to support the modernization of the sector

Empowerment of coastal fishing communities

78

5.5

Strategic Initiatives

Strategic Goals
Sustainable Utilization
of the Resources

1.1
1.2
1.3
1.4

A
profitable,
competitive
and
innovative sector

2.1
2.2

2.3

A
governance
framework
for
modernization of the
sector

2.4
2.5
2.6
3.1
3.2
3.3
3.4
3.5

Empowerment
of
coastal
fishing
communities

4.1
4.2
4.3
4.4

Strategic Initiatives
Draft a national policy for the fisheries sector
Establish a resource management framework revise and update fisheries management
legislation
Establish a resource management framework Prepare a management plan for the marine
fisheries
Establish a resource management framework Strengthen the monitoring, control and
surveillance capability and encourage self-regulation in the industry
Develop infrastructure to support the landing, marketing and distribution of fish
Create the QA environment to support growth of the domestic market and access to foreign
markets for fish and fish products Strengthen capability of competent authority to ensure
compliance
Create the QA environment to support growth of the domestic market and access to foreign
markets for fish and fish products Strengthen capability of industry to comply with QA
requirements
Create opportunities for product development
Produce an annual report on fisheries production and economic performance of the sector
Identify the development potential for aquaculture
Identify or create agencies to lead the development of the sector
Develop and strengthen the human resource capability within fisheries related agencies/
institutions and the fishing industry
Develop the structure to support collaborative management of the Sector
Establish an institutional framework for integrating the fisheries sector into the coastal
development planning and approval process
Enhance systems for information collection and analysis, and dissemination to the fisheries
sector
Strengthen fishing industry organisation and representation
Improve safety and security at sea and on shore
Develop programmes to support alternative employment opportunities for coastal
communities
Develop the human resource base

79

SECTION

SIX
Strategic Actions/Recommendations
6.1
No.
1.

Project Implementation Matrix


Strategic
goals
A Project
Implementatio
n Structure

Strategic Initiatives

Action items

1.1

1.1.1

Creation of a Fishing Industry


Development Company (FIDC)

Prepare Project
Implementation structure,
formalize and staff
Create ad-hoc advisory
groups
Build awareness of the
Strategic Plan with the
executive and stakeholders

1.1.2
1.1.3

2.

Sustainable
utilization of
the Resources

2.1.

Draft a national policy for the


fisheries sector

Sub-total
2.1.1

Prepare a Terms of
Reference for a
consultancy to assist with
the drafting of the national
policy.
Hire Consultant to prepare
draft, consult with
stakeholders and finalise
Policy Document
Consult with stakeholders
in the industry and other
public and private
agencies.

2.1.2

2.1.3

80

Agency
responsible
MTI

Time frame
(months)
3-6

Budget
($000s)
1,250

Means of
Verification

FIDC

50

FIDC

12

60

FIDC/F.D./
T.H.A.

1,360
5

FIDC/F.D./T.H
.A.

12

300

Consultant hired,
draft prepared for
consultation

FIDC/F.D./
M.R.F.

50

Written
comments on
draft submitted
and three
stakeholder
meetings held

Completed TOR

No.

Strategic
goals

Strategic Initiatives

Action items
2.1.4

2.2

Establish a resource management


framework Revise and Update
Fisheries Management Legislation

Formalize at level of
Cabinet/ Parliament
Sub-total
Prepare Terms of
Reference (TOR) for a
Consultancy
Hire a consultant and
facilitate activities
Consult with stakeholders

2.2.1
2.2.2
2.2.3

2.2.4

2.3

Establish a resource management


framework - Prepare a
Management Plan for the Marine
Fisheries

Submit to the Office of the


Chief Parliamentary
Counsel for drafting,
circulate/ publicise for
comments and resubmit to
CPC for final drafting and
publication
Sub-total
Form a team and prepare a
management plan for
marine fisheries outlining
management and
development objectives for
each fishery
Enhance data and
information systems for
productions data, economic
and social statistics, and
environmental information
[refer to 4.5 for budget and
timeframe]

2.3.1

2.3.2

81

Agency
responsible
FIDC/F.D./
M.R.F.

Time frame
(months)
3

F.D./ M.R.F

355
5

F.D./M.R.F

400

F.D./ M.R.F./
Industry
representatives

50

F.D./M.R.F

6 - 12

FD/MRF/FIDC

6 - 10

FD

Budget
($000s)

455
100

Means of
Verification
National Policy
on the Fisheries
Sector published
Completed TOR
Consultant hired,
draft prepared
Written
comments on
draft submitted
and three
stakeholder
meetings held
Completed
Fisheries
Management Act

No.

Strategic
goals

Strategic Initiatives

Action items

Agency
responsible

2.3.3

Outline mechanisms for


representation and
participation of the industry
in the process [refer to 4.3]
Present the Plan to
Stakeholders for discussion
Formalize at the level of
Minister/Cabinet
Sub-total
Develop a programme for
the implementation of
fisheries legislation
Enhance capability in
regulatory agencies
through training
Draft Terms of Reference
for a Consultancy to
Prepare a Proposal for
Infrastructure to meet the
needs of the fishing fleets
of Trinidad and Tobago
Engage a Consultant to
prepare the Proposal and
consult with stakeholders
Build fish port to service the
offshore fleet (Phase 2)
Upgrade existing facilities
at prototype landing sites
(Phase 2)
Upgrade existing market
facilities to meet QA
standards (Phase 2)

2.3.4
2.3.5
2.4

3.

A profitable,
competitive
and innovative
sector

3.1

Establish a resource management


framework (Phase 2) - Strengthen
the monitoring, control and
surveillance capability (MCS) and
encourage self-regulation in the
industry
Develop infrastructure to support
the landing, marketing and
distribution of fish

2.4.1
2.4.2
3.1.1

3.1.2
3.1.3
3.1.4
3.1.5

Time frame
(months)

Budget
($000s)

40

Means of
Verification

3
140
F.D./M.R.F/
CG

(Ongoing)

F.D./M.R.F/
CG/CFD

(Ongoing)

FIDC/FD

FIDC/FD

600

FIDC/FD

36

FIDC/FD

36

20 30,000
10,000

NAMDEVCO/
FIDC

24

22,000

CFD/CPC/FID
C

No funding

$52,605
3.2

Create the Quality Assurance (QA)


environment to support growth of
the domestic market and access to
foreign markets for fish and fish

3.2.1

Amend the Fish and Fish


Product Regulations (1998)
to meet domestic
requirements

82

Amend Fisheries
Legislation

No.

Strategic
goals

Strategic Initiatives
products Strengthen capability of
competent authority to ensure
compliance

Action items
3.2.2

Create a dedicated Fish


Inspection Service within
the competent authority
Develop and implement a
food safety programme for
fish and fish products
Develop capability within
processing plants to do QC
and QA through training
and technical assistance
Facilitate the upgrade of
plant and equipment
through incentives and loan
arrangements [ADB/ or
BDC loan guarantees]
Train fishermen in on-board
sanitation and fish handling
techniques (see 5.4.1)

3.2.3
3.3

Create the Quality Assurance (QA)


environment to support growth of
the domestic market and access to
foreign markets for fish and fish
products Strengthen capability of
the industry to comply with QA
requirements

3.3.1

3.3.2

3.3.3

3.4

Create opportunities for product


development

Agency
responsible
CFD/FD

12
6

200

FIDC/ADB/
BDC/CBSL

15

FIDC/CFTDI

Facilitate attendance at
workshops, trade shows
and expositions for the
processing and retail
components of the sector.

3.4.1

Provide training in
accessing market
intelligence for exportopportunities.
Support research and
development for new
product development in
fisheries.

FIDC/MTI

Provide incentives for


technology upgrades
(See 3.3.2)

FIDC/
ADB/BDC

83

Budget
($000s)
(Check
CFD)

CFD/ FIDC
(Food
and
Beverage)
CFD/ FIDC

3.3.4

3.4.3

Time frame
(months)
6

Six one-week
training courses,
120 fishermen
trained

FIDC/BDC
(Long-term)

FIDC/CFTDI/
CARIRI

Means of
Verification
Creation of Fish
inspection
service
Food
Safety
programme

100/yr

2-day
workshop
24

315
50

400

Development of
new products for
the
fishing
industry
Processing
plants upgraded

No.

Strategic
goals

Strategic Initiatives

Action items
3.4.4

Support promotional
campaign for new products
on the domestic and
regional market

3.5.1

Form a team to prepare the


report
Determine content and
format
Hire economic and
statistical support (use of
extension officers)

Agency
responsible
FIDC/BDC/
TIDCO

Time frame
(months)
Need
for
new product

Budget
($000s)

Means of
Verification

400
3.5

Prepare an economic evaluation of


the Fisheries Sector

3.5.2

FIDC/ FD/THA
FIDC/BDC/FD/
MRF
FIDC/BDC/FD

5-7

Prepare a Terms of
Reference for a
Consultancy to examine the
development potential of
aquaculture.
Engage consultant and
facilitate preparation of
report

FIDC

FIDC

200

4.1.1

Develop a lead agency for


economic development and
business-oriented initiatives
in the sector;

FIDC/ CFTDI/
NAMDEVCO/
FD

200
50

4.1.2

Develop the mechanisms


for inter-agency
collaboration and
stakeholder consultation

FIDC
(See 4.3.1)
Also FIDC and
MAC

3.5.3

150

Final Report on
economics of the
sector

150
3.6

Identify the development potential


of Aquaculture

3.6.1

3.6.2

4.

A governance
framework for
modernization
of the sector

4.1

Identify or create agencies to lead


the economic development of the
sector.

50

84

Plan
for
development of
lead agency

No.

Strategic
goals

Strategic Initiatives

Action items

4.2

4.2.1

Strengthen institutional
capability in economics,
business development,
Contract one/ two
economists to conduct
economic performance
analyses and other relevant
studies to support fisheries
management planning.

4.2.2

4.3

Develop and strengthen the human


resource capability within fisheries
related agencies/ institutions and
the fishing industry.

Develop the structure to support


collaborative management of the
Sector

Agency
responsible
FD/MRF/THA/
FIDC

Time frame
(months)
24

Budget
($000s)
300

Means of
Verification
Hiring two socioeconomic staff at
fisheries

Carry out a needs analysis


to
determine
training
requirements within the
sector.
Enhance
the
capability
of
existing
institutions to deliver high
quality training relevant to
the needs of the sector;

FIDC/CFTDI/U
WI/

25

Needs analysis
and
recommendation
s for training
upgrade

4.3.1

Consultancy to promote the


formation of a national
representative body for the
sector

FIDC/ FD/
MRF

325
150

4.3.2

Legislate for stakeholder


participation in fisheries
management (Refer to 2.2)

FD/MRF
FIDC/ Fishing
Ind. Org.

No
charge

4.3.3

Support participation of
fishing industry
organizations and NGOs in
promoting self-regulation
through training,
participation.

FD/MRF
FIDC/ Fishing
Ind. Org.

28

28

85

Creation of a
National
representative
body
Include in the
legislation
stakeholder
participation
Training courses

No.

Strategic
goals

Strategic Initiatives

Action items

4.4

4.4.1

Establish an institutional framework


for integrating the fisheries sector
into the coastal development
planning and approval process

Draft a report on the


impacts of coastal
development on the
fisheries sector (Link to
5.3.1)
Support the formation of a
multi-sectoral coastal
management planning
agency/unit/team within the
competent authority (Refer
to 2.1)
Strengthen the institutional
capability of the fisheries
sector to participate in
coastal development
planning. (Refer 4.2.2)

4.4.2

4.4.3

Agency
responsible
FIDC/
FD/MRF

Time frame
(months)
Medium-toterm
5-8

Budget
($000s)
100

FIDC/TCPD
FD/MRF

FD/MRF

100
4.5

Enhance systems for information


collection and analysis, and
dissemination to the fisheries
sector

4.5.1

Make mandatory the


submission of fisheries data
for licensing or registration
(Refer to 2.2);
Make designated landing
sites the focus for the
collection of fisheries
production data and
information (Refer to 2.2)
Publish fisheries data on an
annual basis (Link to 4.2.1);
Produce on a regular,
predetermined basis, a
national report on the
fisheries sector.

4.5.2

4.5.3
4.5.4

86

FD/MRF

Long Term

FD/MRF

Long Term

FD/MRF

Long Term

FD/MRF
FIDC

Long-term

Means of
Verification
Report on impact
of
coastal
communities on
the
fisheries
sector

No.
5.

Strategic
goals
Empowerment
of coastal
fishing
communities

Strategic Initiatives

Action items

5.1

Strengthen fishing community


organization and representation

5.1.1

Consultancy and support to


strengthen stakeholder
organizations, and promote
the formation of a national
representative body (Refer
4.3.1).

5.2

Improve safety and security at sea


and on-shore

5.2.1

Support the establishment


of a Marine Police Unit and
strengthen the Coast Guard
presence in fishing areas.
Provide training and
education to promote the
use of safety and
navigation equipment.
Provide greater security at
designated landing sites
[refer to 3.1.3].
Promote the use of
insurance for life, property
and equipment.

5.2.2

5.2.3
5.2.4

5.3

Develop programmes to support


alternative
employment
opportunities for the coastal fishing
communities

5.3.1

Identify and develop explicit


social objectives, plans and
where necessary
ALTERNATIVE JOB
OPPORTUNITIES for

Agency
responsible
FIDA/ Fishing
Ind. Org.

Time frame
(months)

FIDC

Ongoing

FD/ MRF

Ongoing

FIDC/
FD/MRF/
Private Group
FIDC/
FD/MRF/
Private Group
FIDC/FD/MRF
/Rural
Development
Agency/
IMA

Budget
($000s)

Means of
Verification

200

Ongoing

200
150

fishing/coastal communities
[Refer to 2.1].
5.3.3

Initiate new alternatives


opportunities in
primary/cottage processing,
recreational/ tourism
initiatives, with retraining
where necessary within
fishing communities. (see
5.4.1)

87

FIDC/CFTDI/
FD/MRF/
NEDCO

Long-term
Ongoing

New alternative
programmes
developed

No.

Strategic
goals

Strategic Initiatives

Action items
5.3.4

5.4

Develop the human resource of the


sector

Submit to the relevant


authorities, a proposal for
the inclusion of
compensatory measures in
coastal development
approvals that impact the
fisheries sector

5.4.1

Support and expand


community based training
programmes in fishing
technology, QA,
Provide training
opportunities in nonfisheries sectors

5.4.2

Agency
responsible
FIDC/CFTDI/
FD/MRF/
NEDCO

Time frame
(months)
Longer-term

FIDC/CFTDI/
NEDCO

Long-term
(Ongoing)

FD
FIDC/CFTDI/
NEDCO/ BDC

Budget
($000s)

(Ongoing)

150
150

150

88

Means of
Verification

Training
programmes in
QA QC
implemented
Training non-fish
based
programmes
implemented

SECTION

Seven
Implementing the Strategic Plan
7.1

A STRUCTURE FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF THE STRATEGIC PLAN

Two options are being proposed. The preferred option proposes the formation of a new company,
the Seafood Industry Development Company (SIDC) under the Ministry of Trade & Industry, to
be charged with the responsibility of implementing the business development components of the
Strategic Plan, monitoring the progress of projects which fall under other agencies, and
coordinating projects which require multi-agency inputs (See Chart 1).

It is proposed that the Board should consist of 10 -13 individuals representing the various
interests within the sector, with the majority, and the Chairman coming from the private sector
(refer to Appendix 4 for TOR).

The staff of the proposed company should be comprised of full time professionals and support
staff dedicate to carrying out the mandate of the Company.

The other option proposes that the CFTDI be utilized instead. However, it is suggested that if this
option is pursued, the following actions must be taken:

The name of the CFTDI should be changed to more accurately reflect its new mandate
a. It should be brought under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Industry & Trade
b. Its Management Committee should be replaced by a Board of Management, and the
Board should be similarly constituted as that proposed for the FIDC
c. It should be restructured organizationally and otherwise, so that it becomes more
responsive to carrying out its new business oriented mandate

It is further proposed that an Ad-hoc Advisory Body consisting of key stakeholders from the
sector, be established. The Board can draw from this pool of expertise and experience to assist

89

with specific aspects of its work whenever necessary. This body will also be able to provide
feedback on the effectiveness of initiatives taken by the FIDC. It will also serve as a conduit for
the two-way flow of ideas and information between the broader stakeholder community and the
FIDC, while at the same time assisting with building credibility for FIDC initiatives, and
facilitating the change management process among stakeholders.

It is envisioned that the Board will report on progress made regarding implementation of the
Strategic Plan, to the Minister of Trade & Industry on a quarterly basis, and on a semi-annual
basis to the Prime Ministers Standing Committee on Business Development (Executive Steering
Committee.

90

Chart 1

Proposed Structure for the implementation of strategic plan


Standing Committee
on Business
Development

Ministry of
Health

Fishing
Industry

Minister of
Trade and
Industry

Seafood
Industry
Development
Company

Ad Hoc Advisory Group

Development
Functions

91

Minister of
Agriculture, Land and
Marine Resources

Tobago House
of Assembly

Caribbean Fisheries
Training and
Development
Institute

APPENDIX

ONE

Status Of The Resources


The results of research carried out on the major commercial fisheries are set out in a tabular format below. The tables are arranged by
major fishery. The status of the stocks is indicated and the management recommendations outlined. Generally, the research findings
suggest that traditional fisheries are either optimally exploited or over exploited, there are however many gaps in the information
pertaining to some of the offshore fisheries. There is also no information on species such as lobsters for which there is little or no data
available, or on important commercial species such as dolphin that are shared on a regional level.
(Source: Fisheries Division, 2004)
SPECIES

DATA USED IN STUDY

ASSESSMENT TYPE

STATUS OF STOCK

MANAGEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS

The Trawl Fleet : ARTISANAL, SEMI-INDUSTRIAL & INDUSTRIAL TRAWLERS


White shrimp
(L. schmitti)
Brown shrimp
(F. subtilis)

1991

Length-based Thompson and


Bell model applied to the
artisanal trawl fishery in the
Orinoco Delta of Venezuela

Fully to overfished

Brown shrimp
(F. subtilis)

1973-1996

Overfished

Pink Shrimp

1992-2001

Croaker
(Micropogonias furnieri)
Salmon
(Cynoscion jamaicensis)

1987, 1989-1997

Biodynamic production model


applied to trawl fisheries of
Trinidad and Tobago and
Venezuela.
Preliminary assessment using
catch at age model applied to
Trinidad trawl fleets
Yield per recruit (Y/R) analysis.
Depletion modeling

1989-1997

Catch predominantly
young shrimp
Fully to overfished
Fully to overfished

92

No increase in fishing effort for all species. Trinidad


and Tobago trawlers not allowed access to Orinoco
Delta since 1995. A management regime is in place for
the trawl fishery involving zoning of the operations of
the different trawl fleets, a limit on the effort of the
semi-industrial and industrial fleets and the use of TEDs
by these two fleets.

Target larger shrimp


(preliminary)

SPECIES

DATA USED IN STUDY

ASSESSMENT TYPE

STATUS OF STOCK

Shrimp fishery

1995-1998 (Venezuela)
1995-1996 (Trinidad &
Tobago)

Joint Bioeconomic analysis


using data from Venezuela and
Trinidad

Fully to overfished,
over-capitalised

Groundfish fishery

1989-1997

Bio-economic analysis

Fully to overfished

MANAGEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS

Profits to this shared fishery could be maximised by


reducing effort of the Trinidad fleet to 61% of the
current effort and 82% of the current effort of the
Venezuelan fleet.
Limit effort for all fleets since this option maximises the
minimum final biomass attainable as well as minimises
the loss of opportunity

Artisanal Multigear Fleet : GILLNET; SURFACE HANDLINES; SEINES


Carite
(Scomberomorus
brasiliensis)
Kingfish
(Scomberomorus
cavalla)
Sharks
(Carcharinus porosus)

SPECIES

1991-1992

Thompson and Bell(1934) length


based model

Fully exploited

1987

Beverton and Holt (1957) yield


per recruit

Fully exploited

1992

For one species using model


developed for the Australian
gummy

Under exploited

DATA USED IN STUDY

ASSESSMENT TYPE

STATUS OF STOCK

No increase in fishing effort; gillnet mesh size should


not be less than 4 3/4" stretched mesh; line fishing to be
encouraged over the use of gillnets.
No increase in fishimg effort; gillnet mesh size should
not be less than 4 3/4" stretched mesh; line fishing to be
encouraged over the use of gillnets.
Sharks are prone to overfishing as they are slow
growing and take a long time to attain maturity. Fishing
activity directed to sharks must be controlled

MANAGEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS

Artisanal & Semi-Industrial Fleets : GILLNETS & SURFACE HANDLINES


Flyingfish
(Hirundichthys affinis)

1991
Eastern Car. Flyingfish
proj. 1987-89
1989
1997 1999

Thompson and Bell length based


model
Visual abundance survey,
tagging,

Fully exploited
Under- exploited

Precautionary approach to any increase in fishing effort


may reduce catches to local fishery

Unpredictable

Short lived species subject to great inter annual


variability, regional approach to management
recommended

Potential yield of
20,000mt

Harvesting of sardines as food fish is prohibited by law.

CPUE on Barbados Fleet


DNA studies

Artisanal Multigear Fleet : SEINES


Herrings, anchovies,
sardines

1988

Study of potential yield using


hydro acoustic methods for
similar species aggregated
inshore on the east coast.

Artisanal & Semi-Industrial Multi-Gear Fleets : FISHPOT & DEMERSAL LINE


Snapper Plumhead
(Rhomboplites
aurorubens)

1992

Beverton and Holt (1957) yield


per recruit analyses of fishpot
fishery of the north and east
coast.

93

Fully exploited

Restrict fishing effort.

SPECIES

DATA USED IN STUDY

Lane snapper
(Lutjanus synagris)

1980-1981

Redfish
(L. purpureus)

1992

Yellowedge Grouper
(Epinephelus
flavolimbatus)
Sweetlip
(Mycteroperca
interstitialis)

1992

ASSESSMENT TYPE

STATUS OF STOCK

MANAGEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS

Underutilised but the


species may be
currently fully to
overexploited
Fully exploited

Increase the age of first capture of species

Fully exploited or
over exploited

Restrict effort, increase mesh size of fish traps, impact


of illegal fishing by fleets of other countries on these
resources needs to be established

Heavily exploited

Reduce fishing effort

Limit effort. Increase mesh size of fishpots and and


insert biodegradable panel.

Venezuelan Semi-Industrial Fleet : HAND LINES


Red snapper, Vermillion
snapper, yellowedge,
grouper

SPECIES

1981 1992

Catch per unit effort of the


Venezuelan Fleet

DATA USED IN STUDY

STATUS OF STOCK

MANAGEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS

Semi-Industrial Pelagic Longline Fleet, Semi-Industrial Multi-Gear Fleet, Recreational Fleet : LONGLINES, ROD & REEL, HANDLINES
Yellowfin tuna
(Thunnus albacores)
Bigeye tuna
(Thunnus obesus)

Skipjack tuna
(Katsuwanus pelamis)
Albacore (north Atlantic
stock)
(Thunnus alalunga)
Albacore (south Atlantic
stock)
(Thunnus alalunga)

Catch and effort data


from all participating
fleets reviewed annually
Catch and effort data
from all participating
fleets reviewed annually.

3.2kg minimum size limit on individual fish caught; fishing effort not to exceed
1992 level.
Overexploited

Catch reduction to 80,000MT; 3.2kg minimum size limit on individual fish


caught; 25% of vessels using FADs; provide list of all vessels(780 GRT) fishing
bigeye in the Atlantic; limit number of Atlantic vessels (> 24m LOA) to average
number in 1991-1992 (except countries catching< 2,000MT average over recent 5
years; limit number of Chinese Taipei bigeye tuna vessels to 125; catch limit of
16,000mt for Chinese Taipei.
No management recommendations

Stable
Fully exploited

Close to fully exploited


Stock rebuilding programme. Catch limits with country allocations. Minimum
size regulations

94

SPECIES

Swordfish (north
Atlantic stock)
(Xiphias gladius)
Swordfish (south
Atlantic stock)
(Xiphias gladius)
Blue & White Marlin
(Makaira nigricans,
tetrapterus albidus)

DATA USED IN STUDY

STATUS OF STOCK

MANAGEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS

Fully exploited
Stock rebuilding programme. Catch limits, minimum size regulations
recommended, voluntary release recommended.

Close to fully exploited

Overfished

95

APPENDIX

TWO
Strategic Actions
1.

2.

Strategic Goal
Sustainable
Utilization of the
Resources

A profitable,
competitive and
innovative sector

1.1

Strategic Initiatives
Draft a national policy for the
fisheries sector

1.2

Establish a resource
management framework
Revise and update fisheries
management legislation

1.3

Establish a resource
management framework
Prepare a Management Plan
for the Marine Fisheries

2.1

Develop a modern,
economically efficient fleet;

2.2

Develop infrastructure to
support the landing, marketing
and distribution of fish

Action Items
1.1.1.Prepare Terms of Reference for a consultancy to assist with the drafting of the national policy
1.1.2.Hire a consultant to prepare a draft, consult with stakeholders and finalise Policy document
1.1.3.Consult with stakeholders in the industry and other public and private agencies
1.1.4.Formalise at the level of Cabinet/ Parliament
1.2.1.Prepare Terms of Reference for a Consultancy
1.2.2.Hire a consultant and facilitate activities
1.2.3.Consult with stakeholders
1.2.4.Submit to the Office of the Chief Parliamentary Counsel for drafting, circulate/ publish for
comments and resubmit to CPC for final drafting and publication
1.3.1.Form a team and prepare a management plan for marine fisheries outlining management and
development objectives for each fishery
1.3.2.Enhance data and information systems for production data, economic and social statistics, and
environmental information
1.3.3.Outline mechanisms for representation and participation of the industry in the process
1.3.4.Present the Plan to Stakeholders for discussion
1.3.5.Formalise at the level of Cabinet
2.1.1.Promote through regulation and incentives, the modernization of fishing vessels to meet safety
and QA standards and promote economic efficiency (Consultancy to review and recommend
design for inshore fleet);
2.1.2.Institute a system of registration and annual licensing of fishing vessels.
2.1.3.Promote new technologies in fishing, post harvest handling, processing and marketing;
2.2.1 Build fisheries ports in key locations to service the offshore and inshore fleets;
2.2.2 Upgrade existing facilities for the inshore fleets at designated sites; - Consultancy to review the
areas most suitable for fish ports, and constructing these ports.
2.2.3 Upgrade existing market facilities and ensure that marketing and distribution systems conform with
national quality assurance requirements
2.2.4.Review and recommend design features suitable for fish ports and landing facilities

- 96 -

Strategic Goal
2.3

2.4
2.5

3.

A governance
framework for
modernization of the
sector

Strategic Initiatives
Implement fish production and
processing systems that
conform to assurance criteria;

Promote T&T fish and fish


products in local, regional and
international markets
Develop a strategy for
investment in new market
opportunities in the sector

3.1

Draft a Policy for the


development of the fisheries
sector

3.2

Identify or create agencies to


lead the development of the
sector

3.3

Develop and strengthen the


human resource capability
within fisheries related
agencies/ institutions and the
fishing industry

3.4

Update/draft legislation to
modernize,
manage
and
develop the sector

3.5

Strengthen the monitoring,


control and surveillance
capability (MCS) and
encourage self regulation in
the industry

Action Items
2.3.1 Promote through regulation and incentives, the adoption of quality assurance systems and
standards in the processing and retailing of fish and fish products;
2.3.2 Provide for regular monitoring and enforcement of fish and fish product regulations by a qualified
fish inspection service.
2.3.3 Collaborate with the relevant agencies to develop a programme of marine and coastal
environmental monitoring that meets national food safety requirements
2.4.1. Develop a strategy to provide market intelligence for export-oriented products;
2.4.2 Examine opportunities in product development for niche markets and value-added products.
2.4.3 Develop a promotional campaign for fish products on the local market;
2.5.1 Encourage investment in the fisheries sector based on clearly outlined policies and fisheries
management plans
2.5.2 Examine the potential for the expansion of pelagic fisheries offshore (Commercial and
recreational);
2.5.3.Remove tariff on imported whole fish as raw material for fish processing operations.
3.1.1 Examine best practice in countries with similar conditions and experience;
3.1.2 Contract out the preparation of a comprehensive report on the fisheries sector with analyses of the
economic performance of the sector and business plans;
3.1.3 Outline best practice mechanisms for public and private sector collaboration
3.2.1 Identify or create the lead agency to coordinate the management and development of the
traditional coastal fisheries;
3.2.2 Identify or create the lead agency to promote business-oriented initiatives in the sector;
3.2.3 Develop the mechanisms for inter-agency collaboration and stakeholder consultation.
3.3.1.Strengthen institutional capability in resource management, policy and planning, economics,
business development and sociology, fisheries extension and awareness building;
3.3.2.Enhance regulatory capabilities through training in monitoring and enforcement of fisheries
regulations, and quality assurance requirements;
3.3.3.Enhance the capability of existing institutions to deliver high quality training relevant to the needs
of the sector;
3.3.4.Aquaculture systems and operations.
3.4.1.Ensure harmonization of fisheries and fisheries-related legislation with other domestic legislation,
and relevant regional and international legislation, conventions and agreements;
3.4.2.Amend fish and fish product regulations to provide for QA in the domestic fishing industry;
3.4.3.Provide for registration and licensing of fishers and fishing vessels;
3.5.1.Develop a programme for the enforcement of fisheries legislation;
3.5.2.Support the participation of fishing industry organizations and NGOs in promoting selfregulation of the industry;
3.5.3. Examine the MCS requirements for the proposed Common Fisheries Regime.

- 97 -

4.

Strategic Goal
A social policy for
fishing communities

4.1

Strategic Initiatives
Strengthen fishing community
organisation and
representation

4.2

Prepare a strategy to manage


the socio-economic aspects/
consequences of fisheries
management

4.3

Develop the human resource


base

Action Items
4.1.1.Strengthen the role of stakeholder organizations, promote the formation of a national
representative body, ensure accountability to constituents;
4.1.2.Legislate for stakeholder participation in fisheries management;
4.1.3.Explore fisheries management approaches which incorporate collaboration and self-regulation
among stakeholders, precautionary principles and responsible fishing;
4.2.1. Set out explicit social objectives for fishing/coastal communities;
4.2.2.Refer to Governments policies on sector development and fisheries management as guidelines to
the management and development of coastal, artisanal fisheries;
4.2.3. Examine new employment opportunities with the development of alternative activities related to
post harvest handling, primary/cottage processing, recreational/ tourism initiatives;
4.2.4. Examine employment opportunities in other sectors;
4.2.5. Provide a package of opportunities for support and retraining within the community;
4.2.6. Prepare and submit to the coastal development authorities, a proposal for the inclusion of
compensatory measures in coastal development approvals that impact the fisheries sector.
4.3.1. Support and expand community based training programmes on fishing technology, quality
assurance, safety at sea, Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries;
4.3.2. Provide training opportunities in non-fisheries related sectors.

- 98 -

APPENDIX

THREE
Results of Stakeholder Meetings
Tuesday March 15, 2005
Centre Point Mall, Chaguanas, Trinidad

LOOKING AT YOUR SUB- SECTOR


1.

Who are the major stakeholders / players?

2008 Focus Group


1) Wholesalers
Processors

2012 Focus Group


1) Suppliers and Service
Industries

2)

2) Technical Assistance

3)

Retailers
Supermarkets
Roadside and Itinerant
Vendors
Processors
Specialty Shops
Consumers
Domestic
Export Market
Government Institutions
and School Feeding
Programme
Hotels. Restaurants and
Fast Food

3) Support Associations
4) Financial Institutions
5) State and Regulatory
Stakeholders

99

2020 Focus Group


1) Harvestors
2) Processors
3) Fishmongers, suppliers
4) boat builders
5) Financiers
6) State and Regulatory Bodies

2.

You have been invited to present a paper at a Conference and commemorative function in
December 2008/2012/2020. This is to celebrate the success of the Fish and Fish Processing
Industry in being named as a model of best practice. What would be the highlights of your
presentation?

2008 Focus Group


1) Domestic Consumers
Ready Availability of
Products
Affordability
Good Variety
Consistent Quality
Standards
Value Added Availability
2) Exporters
Sufficient Quantity
Market Intelligence
Quality Product
Remove Export Barriers
3) Institutional
Consistent Supply
High Quality
Sanitary Process
Competitive pricing
4) Market and Roadside Vendors
Sanitary, Safe and Secure
Facilities

2012 Focus Group


Proper fishing, berthing,
modern architecture, and
regulations for landing
Integrated body for
inspection and regulation
of fish and fish products
(food and safety issued)
Mandatory safety
equipment (ESPIRB and
VHF radios) for all vessels
Overall industry body (one
stop shop) info and
central database
Aquaculture production
and harvestable limits on
marine resources
Functioning enforcement
of fishing regulations
Well represented and
established support
associations
Increased participation of
women
Well labeled products

100

2020 Focus Group


A united industry that
provides strong
representation, strong lobby
Capable of producing a
safe and wholesome fishery
product that is economical
The industry is vibrant and
there are well informed
stakeholders participating in
the industry
There is a reliable supply of
fish and regulations are
enforced
An end to open fisheries
Level playing field and a
sustainable industry
Dedicated and adequate
infrastructure
Good enforcement

3.

What would you say are five (5) things that the sector could celebrate today.

2008 Focus Group


Location and a great
variety of species
Strong local demand
Prime Ministers Business
Committee initiative
Offshore potential
Strong intermodal regional
links

4.

2012 Focus Group


Training Institutions
C.F.T.D.I, IMA etc.
Pool of fisheries expertise and
technical capabilities
Availability of fish stocks and
active fishing communities
Presence of regulations and
legislation
Opportunities for active
stakeholders involvement
Technical capabilities for
construction of a range of
fishing craft (up to subindustrial)

2020 Focus Group


Presence of numerous fish
processors, producing a
range of fishery products
The fishing industry has a
forum to express their
views
Enhanced export
capabilities
The recognition of the
dietary importance of fish in
the nations diet
Importance of fishing to the
national economy

What would you say really needs improving?

2008 Focus Group


Management of fisheries
resources
Infrastructure
Quality Assurance
Public Education
Greater stakeholder
participation in decision
making

2012 Focus Group


Implementation and
enforcement of all fisheries
and related regulations
Networking and increased
trust among stakeholders
Increased awareness of
fisheries sector (social and
economic and communities in
national development)
Reduction in bureaucracy

101

2020 Focus Group


Infrastructure
Enhanced state financial
support
System of quality assurance
A new system of governance

6.

What are some things happening or likely to happen on the world, regional or local
environment that could impact the development of the Fish and Fish Processing industry in
T&T?

2008 Focus Group


Increasing global demand
Quality Assurance
Free Trade Grouping(s)
C.R.F.M
Prime Ministers
Committee of Fish and
Fish Processing Industry
Team

2012 Focus Group


Collapse of fish stocks
Increased demand for fish
and fish products
Displacement of fisherfolk,
loss of artisanal sector
Increased conflict over shared
resources
International/ Regional
Fishing Policies (FTAA,
ICLAT) environmental
certification (HACCP, EU
Standards)
Local pollution issues

102

2020 Focus Group


Globalisation
Climatological changes
CRFM
Antagonistic effect of energy
and tourism sub-sector
Quality Assurance trends

Wednesday May 11, 2005


Botanic Station, Scarborough, Tobago

LOOKING AT YOUR SUB- SECTOR


1.

Who are the major stakeholders / players?

2007 Focus Group


1. Processors
2. Recreational Fishermen
3. Financers/Investors
4. Fisheries Administration
5. Fishing Vendors
6. Harvesters/Fishermen
7. Consumers
8. Boat Builders
9. Equipment Suppliers and Repairs
10. Ice Suppliers
11. Packaging Suppliers
12. Cold Storage
13. Fuel Suppliers
14. Transporters
2.

2012 Focus Group


1. Harvesters
2. Processors
3. Boat Builders
4. Material Suppliers
5. Banks
6. Fuel Suppliers
7. Tackle shops

You have been invited to present a paper at a Conference and Commemorative function in
May 2007/2012/2020.This is to celebrate the success of the Fish and Fish Processing
Industry Team in being named as a model of best practice. What would be the highlights
of your presentation?

2007 Focus Group


1. Good Infrastructure
2. Training for Fishermen
3. Sustainable fishing practices
4. National autonomy
5. Proper coast guard support
6. Better understanding of the potential of
Trinidad and Tobago

2012 Focus Group


1. State of the art facilities- Landing sites
2. Improved catches
3. Enhanced fishing marketing and promotions
4. Effective fisher folk lobby
5. Highly trained fishermen, factory workers and
technicians
6. Effective enforcement of fish and fish product
regulations
7. Access to European markets
8. Effective security and surveillance especially
for boats and equipment

103

3.

What would you say are the five (5) things that the sector could celebrate?

2007 Focus Group


1. Establishing of the Fish and Fish Processing
Team
2. Existence of strong Fish Processing Sector
3. Good markets for the Fish and Fish
Processing Industry
4. Access to subsidized credit
5. Sport fishers are tagging and releasing all big
fish
4.

What would you say really needs improving?

2007 Focus Group


1. Building on trust between public and public
sector
2. Increased staffing of Fisheries Division
3. Landing sites
4. Management of resources
5. Security for both land and sea
6. Improved handling of fish
7. Timely access to inputs supplies
8. Unification of stakeholders into effecting
lobbies
9. Comprehensive strategic plan for the sector
10. Adequate number of skilled personnel
5.

2012 Focus Group


1. The fact that we are here at the Fish and Fish
Processing Industry Stakeholders meeting
2. The fact that the offshore fisheries are
unexploited
3. Quality of water

2012 Focus Group


1. Landing sites
2.
3.
4.

Cold storage
Grants
Consultation with fishermen

What are some things happening or likely to happen on the world, regional or local
environment that could impact the development of the Fish and Fish Processing Industry
Team in Trinidad and Tobago?

2008 Focus Group


1. Coastal and Offshore Industrial Development
2. Pollution
3. Non- tariff barriers

2012 Focus Group


1. Over fishing
2. Pollution from the Tourism Industry
3. Bad Fishing practices

4.
5.
6.
7.

4. Other people targeting our resources

Increased demand for fish and fish products


Aquaculture
International conventions- ICAT, WECAFC
Unregulated fishing in the high seas

104

APPENDIX

FOUR
PROCESS FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE STRATEGIC PLAN

Fisheries
Consultant

Strategic
Planning
Consultant

Fish & Fish


Processing
Industry Team

Industry
Specialist

Vision 2020
Review of sector
and resources
Research

Fisheries Division
THA

Strategic
Plan Draft 1

Draft
2

Consultations with fishing industry (Trinidad &


Tobago)
Monitoring and advisory committee on the fisheries of
Trinidad & Tobago (MAC)
Fisheries Division
Marine Affairs & Fisheries, THA
Aquaculture representatives

105

Final
Report

APPENDIX

FIVE

(Draft)

Terms of Reference
OF
BOARD OF MANAGEMENT &
SEAFOOD INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENT COMPANY
1. BACKGROUND
In April 2004, the Government of Trinidad& Tobago under the auspices of the Prime Ministers
Standing Committee on Business Development (SCBD), created an industry team comprising
stakeholders from both the private and public sectors, to craft a strategic plan for the
development of the Fish and Fish Processing industry. In September 2005, the Industry Team,
after completing its mandate, made as one of its first recommendations, the creation of a projectimplementing agency, the Seafood Industry Development Company (SIDC).
2. OBJECTIVES OF THE SIDC
The primary objective of the SIDC is to ensure that the strategic goals of the Fish & Fish
Processing Industry Strategic Plan are met, so that seafood industry of Trinidad & Tobago attains
viability on a sustainable basis in the shortest possible time.
3. FUNCTIONS OF THE SIDC
The key mandates of the Company shall be to:
a. Monitor the progress of all projects identified in the Fish & Fish Processing Industry
Strategic Plan (FFPISP)
b. Undertake all projects for which it has full ownership as outlined in the FFPISP
Ensure that all its projects are completed on time and within budget.
d. Liaise and collaborate where necessary, with other agencies that have sole or partial
responsibility for execution of FFPISP projects.
e. Coordinate all FFPISP projects that require multi-agency inputs.
g. Form sub-teams or groups, or undertake any other arrangements it deems necessary for
the cost effective and timely execution of its projects.
h. Advise Government on new opportunities and appropriate initiatives relevant to the
business development of the sector.
i. Promote and gather support for the FFPISP and the SIDC among the wider seafood
industry stakeholder community.
j. Ensure timely preparation of progress and other reports, budgets, schedules and the like
k. Source funding from external sources to supplement that provided by Government
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c.

l. Keep proper accounting records for all funds provided by Government or otherwise
obtained.
m. Recruit suitably qualified staff to carry out its mandate.
n. Undertake other activities that are deemed necessary to properly carry out its mandate
in a timely and efficient manner.
4. THE BOARD OF MANAGEMENT SIDC
Roles of the Board of Management
Members should have a good understanding of the basic functions of a Board of Management.
They are expected to have the ability to understand and appreciate the strategic implications and
expected outcomes of initiatives taken by the Board. Members should have a broad
understanding of project management issues and approaches, and be able to appreciate that the
overall objectives of the SIDC takes precedence over those of whatever grouping or entity they
may represent or be affiliated to. Additionally, members are expected to attend Board meetings
on a regular basis, make meaningful and informed contributions to Board deliberations, and be
fully committed to supporting all aspects of the work of the Board. Finally, Board members
should exercise due care, and act in a prudent and conscientious manner when carrying out their
responsibilities.
Membership
It is recommended that the Board be comprised as follows:
Seafood Processors / Exporters (2)
Harvesters Offshore (1)
Harvesters Inshore (Trawlers) (1)
Harvesters Inshore (Artisanal) (2)
Min Agriculture (Dir of Fisheries) (1)
THA (Dir of Fisheries) (1)
Ministry of Industry & Trade (Industry Specialist) (1)
Rep from national agency responsible for Food Safety (1)
Technical expertise in Social Planning / Rural Development (1)
Technical expertise in Fisheries / Resource Management (1)
Chief Executive Officer (1)
Appointments & Resignations
a. The Minister of trade and Industry, after appropriate consultations, shall appoint all members
of the Board, including the Chairman and Deputy Chairman.
b. Resignation of the Chairman shall be done in writing by the Chairman to the Minister.
c. Resignation of any other Board member shall be submitted to the Chairman, who shall cause
same to be forwarded to the Minister.
d. The Minister shall be notified by the Chairman of the death of a member of the Board.
e. Revocation of the appointment of a member of the Board shall be done by the Minister.
f. A member who is absent for three or more consecutive meetings of the Board shall cease to be
a member of the Board, unless said member has the specific permission of the Board to do so. In
the case of the Chairman, this authorization must come from the Minister.

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Responsibilities
The Board shall:
a. Appoint a General manager, who shall be the Chief Executive Officer, and such other officers
and staff as may be necessary for the effective and efficient administration and management of
the work and projects of the SIDC.
b. Have full authority over, and responsibility for all staff of the SIDC, including recruitment,
management and termination. The Board may delegate some of these responsibilities to the
CEO.
c. Fix the terms and conditions of employment of all staff of the SIDC. Some of these
responsibilities may be delegated to the CEO.
d. Have full authority over all projects and other activities of the SIDC.
e. Ensure that implementation schedules are prepared for all SIDC projects, and that these
schedules are adhered to.
f. Monitor and review progress of projects, and ensure that project outputs comply with
expectations.
g. Provide guidance to project teams, and users of project outputs, as and when necessary.
h. Ensure adherence of project activities to standards of best practice, both within the
organization, and the wider context.
i. Assist with balancing conflicting priorities and use of resources.
j. Consider issues and ideas raised, of relevance to the development of the industry.
k. Ensure that accepted financial procedures are put in place to ensure that there is strict control
of expenditure, and proper accounting records are kept, so that all financial transactions are
transparent and above board.
l. Ensure that audited financial statements for the SIDC are prepared at the end of each financial
year.
m. Ensure that a budget for the following year is prepared and submitted to the appropriate
authorities in a timely manner.
n. Take whatever other measures that is necessary to carry out its mandate.
Other Obligations
a. Every member shall give to the Board in writing within one month of being appointed to the
Board:
i). Notice of all direct or indirect pecuniary interests that he/she has, or has acquired in any
business, or in any body corporate carrying on any business with the SIDC in the exercise of its
functions.
ii). A commitment that he/she will not engage, directly or indirectly, in any business or
professional activity which will conflict with the business of the SIDC.
b. Where the Board proposes:
i). Form or participate in the formation of a company , or participate in the a
partnership, trust or unincorporated joint venture
ii). Make a change in the nature or extent of its interest or objectives
iii). Expend more than $500,000.00 at any one time.

108

company,

It shall immediately give written notice of the particulars of the proposed activity to
Minister, and obtain his/her approval before proceeding with same.

the

Meetings
a. Regular meetings of the Board shall be held at least once per month, at a date and time
agreed to Board.
b. Special meetings of the Board may be held to discuss matters of urgent interest. These
meetings shall be convened at the discretion of the Chairman or Deputy Chairman (if for any
reason the Chairman is unable to act) or on receipt of a written request signed by no fewer
than six members of the Board.
c. An Annual general Meeting shall be held at a time and date to be fixed, after consultation
with the Minister.
d. The quorum for a Board meeting shall be seven members.
e. The Chairman shall preside over all meetings of the Board at which he is present.
f. In his absence, the deputy Chairman shall preside at the meeting.
g. In the absence of both the Chairman and Deputy Chairman, members present shall elect one
of their number to preside over that meeting.
h. All decisions of the Board shall be arrived at by a majority of votes of members present and
voting.
i. In the event of a deadlock on a resolution, the Chairman or member presiding shall have a
casting vote.
j. The Board shall appoint a Secretary, either from its membership or from the staff of the
SIDC.
k. Minutes of each Board meeting shall be prepared by the Secretary.
l. The Agenda of the next Board meeting, together with minutes of the last Board meeting, plus
other meeting documents, shall be distributed to all Board members at least three days prior
to the next scheduled meeting of the Board.
m. All agenda items under New Business shall be forwarded to the Chairman, no less than
five days before next Board meeting. The Chairman should use his discretion regarding
inclusion of same in the agenda.
n. Members may, during a Board meeting, raise an item under Other Business, if necessary,
and as time permits.
o. The Board may determine the further conduct of proceedings at its meetings as it sees fit.
Reporting
a. The Chairman, and in his absence, the Deputy Chairman shall report to the Minister on a
quarterly basis on the status of the work of the Board. These reports should update the Minister
on the progress of projects, and expenditure incurred; plans for project implementation for the
next quarter, and projected expenditure; and any other matters that the Chairman determines is
sufficiently important to warrant the Ministers attention.
b. The Board shall within two months of the end of each financial year, submit a report to the
Minister, on the achievements of the SIDC during the past year. This report shall include
financial statements, a forecast of new projects and other initiatives to be taken during the
coming year, expected outcomes and projected expenditures.

109

c. The Minister may, at his discretion, draw to the Boards attention, matters of broad public
interest as they relate to the sector, and the Board shall consider same and take action as it sees
fit.
Remuneration
All Board members shall be paid remuneration/stipends, as may be approved by the Minister.

110

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