Results of the 2nd Global Fishery Forum

The 2nd Global Fishery Forum & Seafood Expo Russia, the Russian fishery sector’s key event, has concluded in St. Petersburg. Leading businesspersons, members of fisheries organizations, heads of sectoral agencies from around the world have assembled at the Forum that has become a crucial venue for discussions in the professional community.

For the second year running, Russian and foreign experts demonstrated their high interest in the Global Fishery Forum. Over 1,100 Forum delegates and over 3,000 exhibitors and Expo visitors attended GFF 2018. Participants from 42 foreign countries came to the Forum from, among other countries, Germany, Iceland, Japan, Mauritania, Morocco, Norway, the Republic if Guinea, South Korea, the US. Over 150 Russian and foreign journalists were accredited to the event.

“The Global Fishery Forum has become a truly key event for both the Russian fishery industry and the global sectoral community. I am confident that the Forum’s dialog between members of the authorities, businesses, and fishery experts will make it possible to take the discussion of topical issues in the global fish market to the level of making key decisions in the sector,” said Anton Kobyakov, Russian Presidential Adviser.

Deputy Prime Minister and Fisheries Minister of the Faroe Islands gni Hoydal, Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries, Rural Development, Water and Forests of the Kingdom of Morocco Aziz Akhannouch, Minister of Fisheries of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea Song Chun Sop, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture and Marine Economy of the Republic of Guinea Fredéric Loua, Deputy Minister of Jihad-e Agriculture and the Head of Iran Fisheries Organization (SHILAT) Hassan Salehi, Deputy Director for Policies in Fisheries, Aquaculture, and Resources of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Audun Lem, Emeritus Scientist at the Pacific Biological Station Dr. Richard Beamish, General Secretary of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) Anne Christine Brusendorff, President of the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission (NPAFC) Suam Kim, President of the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization (NASCO) Jóannes Hansen, President of the EU Fish Processors and Traders Association and the European Federation of National Organizations of Importers and Exporters of Fish Guus Pastoor were among the foreign dignitaries attending the Forum.

“The fishery sector is a crucial one in Russia’s economy. It has a strategic significance for ensuring Russia’s food security. In order to harmoniously organize fishing, to develop the market and to realize the export potential, major attention should be paid to international cooperation. This is why today we need such events as the Global Fishery Forum, the key venue for discussing sectoral trends,” said Dmitry Patrushev, Minister of Agriculture of the Russian Federation, at GFF 2018. At the Forum’s opening ceremony, he read out President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin’s official welcome address to the GFF attendees.

On the Forum’s sidelines, Deputy Minister of Agriculture of the Russian Federation and Head of the Federal Agency for Fishery Ilya Shestakov held several bilateral meetings with heads of sectoral agencies of the Faroe Islands, Morocco, Iran, North Korea, South Korea, and with executive secretaries of international fishery organizations (FAO, NAFO, NEAFC, ICES, NASCO, NPAFC).

The Forum’s business program included a plenary session, thematic conferences and round tables where participants discussed the relevant issues in today’s fishery industry.

Day 2 of the Global Fishery Forum featured the key event of its business program, the “Global fishing activities 2050: resources, markets, technologies” plenary session attended by Deputy Minister of Agriculture of the Russian Federation and Head of the Federal Agency for Fishery Ilya Shestakov, President of United Shipbuilding Corporation JSC Alexei Rakhmanov, leaders of the sectoral agencies of the Faroe Islands and Morocco, experts of the UN (FAO), the Pacific Biological Station, of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea, of the Embassy of the Kingdom of Denmark in Russia. Attendees discussed the global issues of competition in the World Ocean, reserves of aquatic bioresources, and the prospects of aquaculture in the context of the Earth’s growing population.

“At the Global Fishery Forum a year ago, we drew an important, even strategic conclusion: the competition vs. cooperation dilemma may be transformed into the ‘cooperating in management while competing on end markets’ formula,” Ilya Shestakov noted at GFF 2018. “Currently, we are facing new global challenges that even the most powerful countries cannot handle on their own. We propose convening an international group of scientists and experts to discuss the global issues in the fishery complex and to speedily develop recommendations thereon.”

Sectoral experts and members of official delegations attended the panel sessions: “Issues in commercial straddling stocks fishing activities,” “Shipbuilding 2050: A peek into the future,” “Resources,” “Aquaculture: 2050 breeding and development forecast,” “Global consumer markets,” “Russian fish: a strategy for promoting Russian fish products on the Russian market,” “Technologies: from production to consumer.”

On the Forum’s first day, the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) awarded its certificate for walleye pollock trawl fishing in the Sea of Okhotsk. On 14 September a field event was held on the Forum’s sidelines. A keel laying ceremony of the longliner factory ship (fish processing vessel) Marlin with the daily capacity of 30 tons of fish was held at Northern Wharf Shipbuilding Company. On 15 September the International Year of the Salmon was inaugurated at the GFF. The Year was established by the global community of scientists and environmentalists; it features a series of events intended to resolve the issues in the global preservation of salmon species.

“The Best Fish Product” awards ceremony was held at GFF 2018. The competition had been spearheaded by the Federal Agency for Fishery together with VNIRO and the National Fish Resources. The competition open to Russian fish manufacturers is intended to improve the competitiveness of Russian fish products, to gain recognition among the global community, and to promote producers of quality fish goods.

Several important agreements were signed at the Forum: an agreement on cooperation between the Fishery and Communications Monitoring Center and Trading Technologies SC LLC, an inter-governmental agreement on cooperation in fishery and aquaculture between the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Guinea, a memorandum of understanding between the Russian Federal Agency for Fishery and the Aquatic Resources Authority of the Republic of Panama on cooperation in fishery and aquaculture, as well as a continuing agreement between FOR GROUP and Lenta on direct shipments of fresh fish from Russia’s North-West to Lenta’s retail stores.

The 2nd Seafood Expo presented cutting-edge technologies in today’s fishery complex. The exhibition comprised about 200 companies working in fishing, processing, shipbuilding, and sales, equipment manufacturers, sectoral associations. Compared to last year, the share of foreign companies grew 3.5 times including such major players as Baader (Germany), Remontova (Poland), Simrad (Spain), Knarr Group (Iceland), and others. The Expo area featured Russian Fish, the first fish fast food restaurant. The overall Expo area totaled 13,000 sq.m. 38 companies from China, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden presented cutting-edge equipment.

For the first time, the Expo featured joint regional and national booths, such as the joint regional booths of Arkhangelsk, Kaliningrad, and Astrakhan regions, the Republics of Karelia and Tatarstan, the Azov and Black Sea fishery basin that brought together mariculture enterprises from Crimea and Rostov, and joint national booths of Norway, Iceland, Morocco, and Argentina.

Every year, topical issues in the fishery industry are broached at major international discussion venues. Discussion summaries are available on the website of the Roscongress Foundation’s information and analytical system. St. Petersburg International Economic Forum 2018 featured the “Catching the ‘Goldfish: Sustainability Factors of Fisheries” panel session. The fishery topics were also actively discussed at the 4th Eastern Economic Forum. EEF 2018 featured the “The Fishing Industry: New Challenges” and “Aquaculture: The First Steps of a New Industry” panel sessions.