IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


25th January, 2024 Economy


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Picture Courtesy: www.fao.org

Context: The election of India as the Vice Chair of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) COFI Sub-Committee on Fisheries Management is a significant development in the international arena.


  • India's appointment as a member of the FAO Fisheries Bureau on 'Capture Fisheries' is highlighted as a significant development. This is the first time in 57 years that India will serve in this capacity. This indicates an increased role and responsibility for India within the FAO in matters related to capturing fisheries.

FAO’s Committee on Fisheries (COFI)

Establishment and Structure

  • The Committee on Fisheries (COFI) is a subsidiary body of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), a specialized agency of the United Nations.
  • It was established in 1965 by the FAO Conference, representing a global effort to address and manage issues related to fisheries and aquaculture.


  • COFI plays a pivotal role in addressing international fishing and aquaculture concerns.
  • It provides policy guidance on fisheries management, acknowledging the complex interplay of environmental, economic, and social factors in the fishing industry.
  • COFI recognizes global challenges and strives to promote collective solutions to ensure the sustainability of the fishing industry on multiple fronts.
  • The committee has the authority to make recommendations to the FAO Council or its Director-General, influencing international policies on fisheries.

Sub-Committee on Fisheries Management

  • The Sub-Committee on Fisheries Management is a more recent addition, formed in 2022 during the 35th session of the FAO Committee on Fisheries (COFI) held in Rome.
  • This sub-committee is dedicated to addressing specific issues related to fisheries management, aligning with the broader goals of COFI.

Collaboration with Other Sub-Committees

  • The Sub-Committee on Fisheries Management works in tandem with two other COFI sub-committees: the Sub-Committee on Aquaculture and the Sub-Committee on Fish Trade.
  • This collaborative approach ensures a comprehensive and coordinated effort in addressing various aspects of fisheries and aquaculture at the international level.

Key Facts about FAO

โ—FAO is a specialized agency of the United Nations with a mandate to lead international efforts in defeating hunger and improving nutrition and food security.

โ—FAO has 195 member countries, including 194 countries and the European Union, reflecting a broad international collaboration.

โ—The primary goal of FAO is to achieve food security for all, ensuring that people have regular access to enough high-quality food to lead active and healthy lives.

โ—FAO works in conjunction with other UN agencies, including the World Food Programme (WFP) and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), forming a collaborative network to address global food-related challenges.

โ—FAO's headquarters are located in Rome, Italy, making it a central hub for coordinating international efforts in agriculture, fisheries, and food security.

โ—FAO regularly publishes key reports such as The State of the World's Forests (SOFO), The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture (SOFIA), The State of Agricultural Commodity Markets (SOCO), and The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI). These reports serve as valuable resources for policymakers and researchers.


  • India's leadership roles in the COFI Sub-Committee and membership in the FAO Fisheries Bureau signal a commitment to contributing to global discussions and policies related to sustainable and inclusive fisheries management.

Must Read Articles:

FISHERIES SECTOR IN INDIA: https://www.iasgyan.in/daily-current-affairs/fisheries-sector-in-india-23


Q. The fisheries sector provides critical livelihoods and food security for millions of Indians. How can the government ensure equitable benefits for fishing communities, including small-scale fishers and marginalized groups?