WEST AFRICA'S FISHERIES - Senegal, 1980 - Two fishermen lay nets from their canoe in the waters off Ouakam, a fishing village near Dakar.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the U.N. (FAO) has launched a special programme for the development and management of fisheries in 200-mile exclusive economic zones (EEZ) of developing coastal states. In West Africa these include Morocco, Senegal and Ghana - some of the leading fishery nations in the region. West Africa, from Morocoo to Zaire, is served by FAO's Committee for Eastern Atlantic Fisheries (CECAF), based in Dakar and funded by UNDP. One of CECAF's continuing tasks has been to harmonize fishery statistics and to provide technical guidance in evaluating fish stocks for more rational exploitation. Most of the region's total catch of about 3.1 million tons had previously been caught by foreign vessels, mainly from the USSR, Poland, Spain, Republic of Korea and France. With the establishment of EEZ's, the foreign share of the catch has dropped, especially the Soviet catch, while that of local countries has increased in overall terms.