National Coordination mechanism for decent work in the fisheries sector launched

Erasmus Shalihaxwe

The Ministry of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment Creation (MLREC), in collaboration with the International Labour Organisation (ILO), last week launched the National Coordination Mechanism (NCM) on Decent Work in the Namibian Fisheries Sector.

The launch which took place in Walvis Bay, was also accompanied by a Business Forum on Advancing Decent Work in the Namibian Fisheries Supply Chain.

The Acting Executive Director of the Ministry of Labour Aune Mudjanima, made the announcement, stating that the Namibian fisheries industry, is a cornerstone of the nation’s economy, that employs thousands of people and significantly contributes to international trade.

However, it faces challenges related to decent work, safety, skills development, and issues of illegal fishing. Therefore, to address these challenges, the NCM has been established to ensure compliance with international labour standards, particularly the Work in Fishing Convention, 2007 (No. 188), ratified by Namibia in 2018.

Adding that during the launch, the line minister Utoni Nujoma, emphasised the crucial role of the fisheries sector in Namibia’s economy. While also highlighting the Government’s commitment to addressing key issues affecting the sector, which lead to the establishment of the NCM and the organising of the Business Forum to raise awareness and discuss opportunities for improvement in the Fisheries Sector.

“Decent work, not only a moral imperative but also essential for sustainable development, was underscored throughout the event. When workers are treated fairly, paid decent wages, and provided with safe working conditions, they contribute more effectively to economic growth and productivity.

Key achievements and initiatives were highlighted during the launch, including the ratification of international labour instruments such as Convention No. 188, aimed at promoting decent work in the fisheries sector.

Additionally, efforts under the Sustainable Supply Chains to Build Better (SSCBFB) project, supported by the European Union (EU) and ILO, were commended for addressing challenges and opportunities in the fisheries supply chain,” she explained.

Adding that the NCM was appointed through tripartite nominations, and will serve for five years, with a mandate to support and coordinate the full implementation and enforcement of Convention No. 188. They will consult and make recommendations to relevant ministries, monitor progress, and provide advice to ensure compliance with international labour standards.

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