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Socio-economic aspects of the Saudi Arabian fisheries in the Red Sea









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    Report on the exploratory socio-economic survey of the Egyptian Red Sea fisheries 1979
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    The Egyptian Red Sea coast is approximately 1630 km in length. The main fishery centres are Suez, Hurghada and Quseir on the western side. El-Tor fishing centre, located on the eastern side of the Gulf of Suez was under Israeli control when this report was being prepared. The yearly average catch of the Red Sea fisheries has been estimated at approx. 16000 tons. The fishing fleet consists of 287 motorized boats powered by engines from 8-400 HP, and 158 sail and row boats. The medium and larger m otorized boats use trawling and purse seine or both either in or out of the Gulf of Suez. Boats is marketed fresh (iced) and in small parts salted and dried. Pricing is considered a complicated problem, both for fishermen and for the authorities. Inadequate pricing has given rise to black market of fish. The total number of fishermen is about 3700. The Suez Fishing Centre area is the densest followed by Quseir and Hurghada. The majority of fishermen have no other occupation. Some owners of motor ized boats participate in the fish trade. Also, the big fish traders own all or part of some fishing boats. The standard of living is rather low, especially for small owners and labourers. Most of the fishermen depend mainly upon fish traders to supply them with loans to finance their business and personal requirements. There is a trend among the fishermen to leave fishing for other activities for the following reasons: the pollution caused by oil prospecting operations; security regulations hav e limited fishing operations; the prohibition of fishing operations near some islands restricts fishing areas, especially for the small boats which cannot operate far from the coast; lack of a rational fish pricing systems; the inadequacy of social services and relatively high wages in mining, construction and touristic projects which entice fishermen to leave fishing activities; lack of proper facilities on the landing sites hampers fishing operations. The Fishermen Cooperative Societies (FCS) in Suez, Hurghada and Quseir are considered as the main fishermen's organizations. However, the activities of these FCS arc very limited mainly due to lack of funds. Because of the numerous authorities supervising the Red Sea fisheries, an overlap occurs which, coupled with lack of coordination, given rise to conflicting decisions and inadequate use of available resources.
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    Report on socio-economic aspects of the Gulf of Aden fisheries in the Republic of Djibouti 1982
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    The Djibouti coastline on the Gulf of Aden is about 242 kms long. The present catch is estimated at about 350 tons. There are about 286 fishermen who operate with 111 houris and sambuks of different shapes and sizes. They are based in Djibouti, Tadjouram Obock and Khor Anghar. The number of fishermen has increased during the past few years due to the drought conditions which have forced nomadic herdsmen to the coast. The fishermen have a very low standard of living. This is mainly due to the low productivity, high cost of living and large families. The fishermen's per capita income is less than two-thirds of the national average. A Fishermen Cooperative Society was established recently in Djibouti City with the objective of improving the socioeconomic conditions of fishermen. Although the subject has not been thoroughly examined it is believed that the main constraints in the fisheries sector are as follows: lack of a fisheries-related infrastructure; the low productivity of the tradit ional fishing methods; lack of credit facilities and technical services; lack of organised fish distribution and marketing systems within the country. Obock is recommended for the establishment of a Cooperative Fishing Centre as a pilot project where cooperative activities can be introduced and applied in due course in other areas.
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    Al Quseir Fishing Centre. Pt. 2: Establishment of the cooperative fishing centre and its socio-economic implications 1982
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    The Al Quseir area was chosen as the site to set up a pioneer cooperative fishing Centre as a model to be applied in developing other fishing regions, located along the Red Sea coast, through governmental or local organizations. The components of the proposed Centre and the available facilities were determined in the light of the conclusions reached in the socio-economic survey conducted in the region. An administrative system was established, with the actual participation of the fishermen's rep resentatives, to draw up policies and decisions related to the Centre. Similarly, this system entails the participation of the fishermen in handling the daily activities of the Centre in order to ensure the formation of competent cadres of fishermen capable of managing the Centre without external assistance. So far, the activities of the Centre have focused on the mechanization of fishing boats, improvement in their construction, in addition to providing repair and maintenance services and means for transporting fish and ice. Similarly, the activities focused on improving the handling, processing and marketing of fish. Also an attempt has been made to provide some basic social services. After providing such facilities a field experiment was conducted. It consisted of establishing a cooperative fishing camp in one of the southern areas of the Egyptian coast with the objective of identifying on-the-spot problems related to the exploitation of the southern regions from which it is hoped t o increase the Egyptian catch from the Red Sea. Besides, the experiment aims at finding means for dealing with these problems through cooperative action by using existing local facilities in order to increase fish production and consequently enhance the fishermen's incomes. The experiment increased the fishermen's monthly incomes about fourfold. This, in turn, convinced fishermen of the advantage of cooperative action and of increasing the financial resources of the cooperative society which led to the improvement in the services it offers to fishermen, and controlled the exploitation of small fishermen by middlemen. It also emphasized the success of the concept of the cooperative fishing Centre as an approach to developing small-scale fishing communities.

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