An Exploration of Fisheries Management Agencies in East Africa

Coastal countries around the Western Indian Ocean depend on fisheries for their national economies and local livelihoods. The long-term sustainability of these fisheries depends on strong state-level governance, which is developed through legislation and a management agency. We conducted a review of five countries’ fisheries management agencies to provide an overview of key functions and provide examples of ways to incorporate those functions into a national agency.

Fisheries management agencies in the region include a variety of organizational structures, but all have common mandates to create and enforce regulations on fisheries. We outline the structure and functions of fisheries management agencies from Mozambique, Eritrea, Tanzania, Kenya, and the Seychelles.  This overview focuses on the management of commercial fishing and offshore resources. 

Exploring the similarities and differences among these countries’ systems highlights how each country created agencies to suit its individual needs. Showcasing these five models all together provides other countries and stakeholders with a resource to identify appropriate organizational structures for their own management agency.

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