Senegal’s New President Announces Audit of Fishing Agreements

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(Bloomberg) -- Senegal will review fishing deals and licenses signed with its partners that include the European Union to ensure they’re optimized to benefit the sector, newly elected President Bassirou Diomaye Faye said.

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The government will undertake an “evaluation of fishing agreements and licenses” aimed to preserve its resources and protect small-scale fishermen, Faye said according to minutes from a cabinet meeting on Wednesday.

Faye also called for a review of the maritime fisheries code with the aim “to strengthen mechanisms to combat illegal fishing.”

Faye’s comments signal that Senegal may seek to take more control of a sector that accounts for about 10% of the country’s exports, according to US Department of Agriculture data.

It’s estimated that Senegal and its neighbors Gambia, Mauritania, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea and Sierra Leone together lose $2.3 billion annually to illegal fishing, according to Amnesty International.

Spanish and French boats are part of the foreign fleet fishing in Senegalese waters under an agreement with the European Union. The deal, which expires later this year, allows European vessels to fish tuna and black hake in certain zones off the Senegalese coast.

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