The twelfth meeting of NACA’s Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held in the coastal town of Cha-am, Thailand from 9-12 March, approximately two hours’ drive south of Bangkok. The meeting was attended by participants from sixteen NACA member states, the Regional Lead Centres for China, India, the Philippines and Thailand and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
The TAC meets every two years to review NACA’s rolling work programme and propose amendments to realign it with the current needs of member governments and to account for new and emerging issues. In proposing changes, the TAC prioritises issues of common concern to multiple member governments where there are good prospects for regional collaboration. The NACA Secretariat uses the output to revise the work programme, which is submitted to the next meeting of the NACA Governing Council for consideration and adoption.
The objectives of the Aquaculture for Food Security, Poverty Alleviation and Nutrition (AFSPAN) project were to strengthen the knowledge base and develop new and more rigorous methodologies of quantifying the contribution of aquaculture to combat hunger and poverty, thus providing the evidence upon which sound strategies, policies and research programs can be developed to support the sustainable expansion of aquaculture to maximise its impact on food and nutrition security and poverty alleviation.
The three-year project was implemented by eighteen partners in eleven Asian, African and South American developing and Low Income, Food Deficit Countries (LIFDCs), encompassing the spectrum of development conditions and role of aquaculture in national economies. The partnership also included EU partners and international organisations.
The Gender and Aquaculture Seminar: Equity and Regional Empowerment in the Aquaculture Value Chain, a culminating activity for the NACA/USAID/MARKET Project’s Thematic Studies of Gender in Aquaculture, was held on 24 to 25 February 2015 in Bangkok. The year-long project conducted research on womens’ roles and influence on selected aquaculture value chains in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam. The goal of the research was to raise awareness and increase recognition of gender roles, policies and programs in the aquaculture industry in the selected countries to support more sustainable and responsible development.
The USAID Maximizing Agricultural Revenue through Knowledge, Enterprise Development, and Trade (MARKET) Project and the Network for Aquaculture Centres in Asia (NACA) are hosting a Gender and Aquaculture Seminar: Equity and Regional Empowerment in the Aquaculture Value Chain on February 24-25 in Bangkok, Thailand. The USAID MARKET Project and NACA have undertaken a year-long research project on women’s roles and influence on selected aquaculture value chains in four countries in Southeast Asia. The goal of the research was to raise awareness and increase recognition of gender roles, policies and programs in the aquaculture industry in ASEAN in order to support more sustainable and responsible development. The findings and recommendations outlined in the Thematic Studies of Gender in Aquaculture in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam will be presented at the workshop. This is an opportunity for public and private sector stakeholders to share their current activities that support equity and empowerment in the aquaculture value chain.
NACA will also launch a Regional Network for Gender and Aquaculture Practitioners. The Network will raise awareness of constraints and promote policy recommendations and best practices to employers, donors and governments.
The Network of Aquaculture Centres in Asia-Pacific team participated actively during the 5th Global Symposium on Gender in Aquaculture and Fisheries (GAF5) held during 12-15 November 2014, in Lucknow, India. This event was held simultaneously with the 10th Indian Fisheries and Aquaculture Forum and the International Workshop on Aquatic Animal Disease Surveillance, wherein NACA was also represented.
Dr Cherdsak Virapat, NACA Director General, in his speech at the 10 IFAF and GAF5 opening ceremony, introduced NACA’s programmes with gender as one of the cross cutting themes, and giving acknowledgement to various organisations providing support, both local and international. The major international supporters were NORAD for GAF5 organisation, and USAID for the MARKET Special Workshop and MARKET Gender Project as a whole.