29 April 2022 A multi-agency group met this week at the Kenya Fisheries Service (KeFS) regional office in Mombasa to discuss new support aimed at improving risk assessment of foreign-flagged fishing vessels requesting access to port.
Kenya recently joined the ‘Intelligence-led port controls’ programme, an initiative by TMT and Global Fishing Watch (GFW) aimed at supporting African States in implementing the FAO Port State Measures Agreement.
Discussions focused on key activities planned for the first phase of support, which includes the preparation of a PSMA profile of the Mombasa port, based on historical port calls by foreign-flagged fishing vessels, and a baseline risk analysis to guide the processing of future AREPs (Advance Request for Entry to Port).
Participants were also introduced to the test version of Vessel Viewer, a mobile application developed by GFW and TMT aimed at providing port inspectors with the most up-to-date information on a fishing vessel’s identity and operations. Tablets were handed over to KeFS to allow personnel to start using the application, thereby joining test users from the other three pilot countries Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Senegal.
A multi-agency team of maritime analysts and port inspectors stationed at the Joint Operational Centre (JOC) and at the Joint Port Control Unit (JPCU) were also introduced to Vessel Viewer and invited to start using the app as part of its test phase.
Kenya became a party to the Port State Measures Agreement in 2017 and has recently conducted a gap assessment of its MCS regulatory framework and capacities with the support of FAO. A roadmap for PSMA implementation is being developed to address those gaps, and will guide all support activities to KeFS and partner frontline agencies.