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Public Officers at the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Ministry of Natural Resources and Labour and the Premier's Office have been trained on the central fisheries GIS database that is being developed for handover to the Government of the Virgin Islands.
The training and wider marine governance discussions was conducted from October 24 to 28 by representatives from the UK Government’s Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Sciences (Cefas). The resource persons were Senior GIS Analyst Dr. Roi Martinez, GIS Analyst Mr. William Procter, and Senior Scientific Advisor of UK Cefas, Dr Leila Fonseca.
Assistant Fisheries Officer of the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Abbi Christopher said, “We are excited for the opportunity to implement what we have learned during the course of this training for better fisheries management in the Territory.”
The database will improve the storage and analysis of fisheries data to support research and decision-making for fisheries management and development in the Territory.
Dr. Leila Fonseca stated, “This in-country visit has been an extremely valuable opportunity for Cefas GIS specialists to share expert knowldege and to tailor project outputs to the unique requirements of the Government of the Virgin Islands.”
The visit by the representatives to the Virgin Islands was part of the Darwin Plus funded Project "Capacity Building in Fisheries Evidence, Networks, and Management (Virgin Islands)", which aims to enhance the knowledge and capacity of the Government of the Virgin Islands staff, fisherfolk and key fisheries stakeholders for fisheries management. The project also seeks to improve the collation and display of fisheries data and evidence.