Title: Evaluation of the sustainable fisheries partnership agreement between the European Union and Liberia.

Final project
Year of publication:
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Supervisors: Arnor Snæbjörnsson
European Union (EU); Liberia; sustainable fisheries partnership agreement (SFPA); sustainability;


The Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreement (SFPA), a bilateral arrangement between the European Union and Liberia, is a clear and purely commercial deal that is designed to maximise access to the fishery resources of the coastal state. This study aims to provide a theoretical review of the SFPA between EU and Liberia, reviewing some of the related fisheries challenges, the management of stocks in Liberia, limitations in the agreement, and analysing the results from reported tuna catch as reported by EU fleet against the vessel monitoring system data from the control centre of Liberia. Financial compensation paid by selected European Union countries as subsidy for fishing rights covers a period of five years for resources harvested from the country’s waters for license fees and is equivalent to a reference tonnage of 6,500 per year. This subsidy places the EU in the position of preferred user of the coastal resources due to lack of processing facilities to add value to fishery products in Liberia. This report also considers Liberia’s capacity to monitor the long-distance fleet in its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). This type of agreement should focus on the long-term sustainability of the marine resources. Long-term, coastal countries like Liberia should undertake a more coordinated approach in dealing with foreign pressures on their resources and try to be pragmatic in their approach to negotiating a fisheries agreement with the EU in the next sitting.

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