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Community Contribution

From Challenge to Opportunity: CLA Response to IUU Fishing in the Philippines

R. Geronimo, W. Penalosa, A. Uychiaoco, and R. Guieb

Despite major investments in enhancing the skills, personnel, and capacity of fisheries law enforcement teams, illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing remains among the top threats to marine biodiversity and sustainable fisheries in the Philippines. To identify and further strengthen the Philippine Government’s response capacity, the USAID Fish Right Program initiated a systematic process of analysis, consensus, action, and reflection that brings together diverse expertise from in-the-water law enforcement to data science, and facilitates close collaborations across national government agencies, local governments, local fishing communities, civil society organizations, and academic institutions. Consensus was built on the scale of IUU fishing in the country, and an approach for systematic quantification of local IUU fishing was piloted and refined that jumpstarted a national government effort led by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources to systematically measure improvement in fisheries compliance.

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