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USP & FFA continue to up-skill fisheries officers in the region

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Some of the Compliance Officers that undertook Certificate IV in Fisheries Enforcement and Compliance programme. Source: Supplied.

Ensuring appropriate Pacific Island capacity to effectively address the increasing complexity and importance of regional tuna fisheries management, development and enforcement, The University of the South Pacific (USP), Pacific Technical and Further Education (Pacific TAFE), and the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) are collaborating to develop certified oceanic fisheries training programmes for the Pacific region through a signed Memorandum of Understanding in May 2015.

The first of these professional certification programmes is a Certificate IV in Fisheries Enforcement and Compliance offered by USP and certified by FFA. The delivery of this programme commenced on a cohort basis in 2016.

“FFA is pleased to partner with the region’s premier higher education institution to facilitate and develop quality education and training programmes for fisheries officers and professionals in the Pacific. FFA supports members by offering scholarships for fisheries monitoring, control and surveillance officers,” said Mr James Movick, FFA Director General.

Pacific TAFE, Head of College of Science, Technology and Environment, Dr Brad Carte said the programme in partnership with FFA has been able to make great inroads in strengthening regional training of fisheries officers to improve the effective management of tuna and oceanic fisheries throughout the Pacific.

“To date four cohorts have been completed with 108 Fisheries Officers from 15 Pacific Island countries (PICs) having graduated with the Certificate IV in Fisheries Enforcement & Compliance (Fiji – 51, Solomon Islands – 10, Papua New Guinea – 6, Vanuatu – 6, Cook Islands – 5, Kiribati – 5, Samoa – 5, Tonga – 5, Federated States of Micronesia – 4, Nauru – 4, Republic of Marshall Islands – 2, Tuvalu – 2, Niue – 1, Palau – 1, Tokelau – 1).  A fifth cohort of 42 students is currently ongoing,” he said.

The course consists of four modules; Fisheries Governance and Legal Frameworks, Introduction Fisheries Management, Operational Planning and Enforcement, the role of monitoring, control and surveillance (MCS) and monitoring tools.

The course is for duration of eight months’ online distance learning followed by a week of face to face competency based assessment. Students are assessed by qualified members of FFA staff, New Zealand Ministry of Primary Industry (MPI) and Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA).

Mr Movick said “In terms of other areas of collaboration with USP, although this is still in early stages it is something we are excited about and that is to develop additional courses in fisheries investigation for prosecution. Ideally we would like to have resources to accelerate the pace at which other new programmes can be developed and offered since the regional fisheries and oceanic management and development challenges and opportunities are upon us now.” 

This news item was published on 18 Oct 2018 03:30:54 pm. For more information or any High-Res Images, please contact us on email

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