Securing a Sustainable Future for Fisher Communities Through Enhancing Trade Transparency and Governance Structures in Mozambique and South Africa


To put in place the necessary arrangements and expertise for Mozambique's fisheries to be sustainably managed and for trade in products derived from these fisheries to be effectively regulated in Mozambique and South Africa


Background and activities

This sub-project focuses on sustainable fisheries management in Mozambique and Southern Africa, namely around Quissico, Maputo Bay and Vilanculos with further activities in Cape Town and Johannesburg.

Unregulated and unsustainable trade of fish leads to the loss of marine biodiversity and fish stocks and threatens the ecosystem. This in turn is of concern for local livelihoods that depend on fishing for food and income security. Although South Africa has clear and comprehensive legislation on this matter, there is a need to further enforce its povisions. Other countries in the region require improved legal and policy frameworks for the effective regulation of both domestic and international fish and fish product trade.

The fishing communities and markets remain under-researched and this sub-project will help to further an understanding of the multi-actor networks involved in fisheries management and the various threats they face. Further documentation on socio-economic aspects of fisheries  is necessary to implement appropriate targets and interventions for sustainable fishing practices and poverty alleviation. This includes information on: harvest and trade dynamics, drivers of the sea-food trade, fisheries management and trade regulation, access to fish trade information and how market institutions interact at local and regional/national levels.

IUCN and its partners are building a knowledge base and producing and distributing information materials among community fishers, fish traders and other relevant stakeholders in the market chain. This sub-project also focuses on government capacity to draft and implement policy relevant to pro-poor fisheries management and trade regulation. Capacity needs assessments and legislation reviews are therefore being carried out in relevant Mozambican and South African ministries. Based on these results, IUCN partners will develop materials and training programmes to build capacity to better monitor, manage and regulate fisheries in this region. 


It is expected that this project will provide local communities and other fisheries stakeholders with trade and market information relevant to products derived from the sea. These communities will also become aware of options for co-management of these enterprises.

As a result of government-level intervention, there will be increased transparency and improved regulation of the fisheries trade in and from Mozambique.

In addition,  management will be improved and illegal trade in fisheries resources will be reduced as a result of enhanced community-level and policy-level governance capacities.


This project is closely monitored by TRAFFIC , the wildlife trade monitoring network (a joint programme between WWF and IUCN).

Most of the research and data collection is done by Centro Terra Viva (CTV) in Mozambique. CTV also provides capacity building resources/workshops and coordinate partnerships with other local organisations.

The Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) in South Africa runs South African components of the project and provides CTV with guidance on research methodologies, monitoring and evaluation and capacity building techniques. EWT also analyses the fish-trade dynamics between South Africa and Mozambique.



Traffic Website

Traffic Website


Funded by UKaid from the DFID's Governance and Transparency Fund
  • UKaid
  • Fishing on Lake Kosi in St Lucia, South Africa

    Fishing on Lake Kosi in St Lucia, South Africa

    Photo: IUCN Photo Library © Jim Thorsell

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