Well-coordinated data collection system a must

Fisheries need a coordinated system to accurately monitor fisheries landings and operations.

27 August 2018 | Ministries

Bernard Esau, minister of fisheries and marine resources: "We need to produce timely data, which will ease the process of reporting promptly..."

Otis Finck

Fisheries and marine resources minister Bernard Esau urged delegates attending a statistical data-flow workshop to come up with a well-coordinated data collection system.

Easu said the envisioned system should enable the ministry to accurately monitor fisheries landings operations and emphasised the need to find and resolve bottlenecks which hinder the production of high quality and timely delivered statistical data.

“Reliable statistics are a crucial criterion for evidence-based planning and policy formulation at both national and local levels. It is only through timely, accurate and quality data that we can bring about meaningful changes to the economy,” Esau told attendees during the opening of the workshop.

According to the minister NDP5 reporting shows that there is a slight decrease of 3% in landings of 2017/18 (524 440 metric tonnes) as compared to the 540 811 metric tonnes that was landed in 2016/17.

“I believe this amount could improve if we establish an effective data flow system. We therefore need to produce timely data, which will ease the process of reporting promptly to the request of our stakeholders and indicate the progress of our set goals and initiatives in NDP5. This can only be achieved if we all work together in a cohesive and collaborative manner.”

Esau also pointed out that the world is rapidly changing and said data users have an increased expectation of high quality data that is fit for a purpose.

He further stressed the importance of the fisheries sector and the major role it plays in contributing to national development, food security, sustainable development, the improvement of livelihoods and its important contribution towards the realisation of Vision 2030 as well as the achievement of National Development Plans (NDPs) and the Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP).

"The fisheries sector is one of the highest contributors to the economy and second only to the mining sector in terms of exports. The management of the country’s commercial fisheries is based on a system by which rights are granted, total allowable catch are set based on research results and quotas are issued to rights holders. This system has evolved over the years and served Namibia well in terms of monitoring, control and surveillance (MCS) and stock rebuilding."

The workshop, hosted at the national marine information and research centre (Natmirc) in Swakopmund, brought together all staff members that are involved in the process of data collection, to collaborate, discuss and find solution to the challenges that are affecting the process of data flow within the ministry.

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