FairFishing: Income, livelihood and nutrition through a fishery-based economy in Somaliland

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Abbreviations 4 Introduction 5 The purpose 8 About Somaliland 9 A young, unrecognised democracy 9 Busy shipping lane 9 Fishery feasible and commercially attractive industry 9 Somaliland - turning the tide 9 Broadening the economic base – from livestock to fish 10 Addressing youth unemployment 10 Climate changes and food security 10 Investment in basic infrastructure 10 The state of Somaliland fishery 12 450 commercial fish species 12 One functional port: Berbera 12 Dealing with Illegal fishery activities 12 The Danish organisation 14 The board 14 The secretariat 14 The FairFishing method – starting with demand, context and local ownership 15 Working towards a sustainable fisheries sector – partners with a common goal 15 Piloting the “Hanstholm model” – adapting to the Somaliland context 15 Skills and infrastructure go hand in hand 15 Step-by-step to local ownership 15 Our reference model and method: Aral Lake Fishery - from dead to thriving 17 The supporters 18 Equipment and Services 18 PAST: 2012-2014 19 Proof of concept 19 Local organisation 19 Local advisory board 20 FairFishing – a ripple effect 20 FairFishing results so far 21 PRESENT: 2015 22 Stabilising and scaling operations 22 Partner Supply Unit 22 More cold storage 23 Building a Producer Organisation FairFishing (POFF) 23 FUTURE: 2016-2017 25 Awareness raising strategy 27 Quality control 28 Somaliland: a fishery nation 29 The timeline 30



Danish International Development Agency


Department for International Development


Exclusive Economic Zone

EUCAP Nestor A EU civilian mission with some military expertise under the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP). EUCAP Nestor is an unarmed capacity building mission with no executive powers. FAO/UN

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations


Gross Domestic Product


The International Labour Organisation


Nordic Consulting Group


National Development Plan


Somaliland Development Fund


Somaliland Special Arrangement


UN Office for Drugs and Crime


World Bank


INTRODUCTION Dear reader Somaliland is considered a beacon of hope in a region riddled with conflict. Many of us might think of it as one of the most failed states in the world. While Somaliland borders one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes in the Gulf of Aden, it has managed to establish itself as a haven of security that has been lucky to avoid piracy or the impacts of terrorism seen further East along the coast. The private sector, the diaspora and international partners currently investing in Somaliland, though unrecognised, have seen the fruits of providing support to its successful twenty year-long bottom-up peace and state building efforts. International development partners such as the European Commission, the UK and Danish governments - the largest development partners of Somaliland – are able to focus their efforts, for example, to support the sixth round of elections since 1991, planned for 2015. These partners are also developing alternative energy pilots to address energy needs for better service delivery and working together to address youth unemployment in the region, as well as looking into innovative solutions using technology to stimulate the private sector and trigger economic growth. Despite having one of the world’s longest coastlines at nearly 850 km, the fishery sector in Somaliland is young, with agro-pastoralism and trade being historically dominant. This has left space for Somaliland’s marine resources to be exploited illegally by others, without benefitting its own people. Furthermore, where food security is a regional challenge, fish – a high-value protein source right on Somaliland’s door step- is one that is unknown to most of the local population. There are some 10 permanent settlements along the 850 km of coastline along Somaliland. Prevention - smart investment based on locally identified needs - is much cheaper in every respect than finding a cure. In a time of escalating radicalism, irrespective of religion, social beliefs or geography, using context-specific approaches to address the stress points of vulnerable groups and

meeting their most basic needs have a much bigger impact in stemming the potential of radicalisation. Access to better education, health services, clean water, nutrition; employment and income generation opportunities all go a long way towards preserving human dignity. The development of the fisheries sector in Somaliland has been identified in its National Development Plan (2012 -2016) as a major priority when it comes to achieving rapid economic growth and sustainable development. Fishery can create an enabling environment conducive to employment generation (particularly amongst youth), human resource development, effective and efficient governance, and an alternative source of income. And this is where FairFishing comes in. FairFishing is an independent, non-profit organisation that works to respond to the local needs for gainful employment, rightful, sustainable utilisation of marine resources, and increased availability of nutrition in the Horn of Africa. FairFishing is one of the first international initiatives to have responded to this priority of the Somaliland people and brought practical benefits to the coastal city of Berbera, an important economic hub on the Horn of Africa. We would like you to get to know FairFishing, and invite you to come on board as a financial donor or a strategic partner in one of the best kept secrets in the Horn of Africa. By doing so, you will be making a real difference not just to the Somali people, with impacts that flow on to the rest of the world. How much do we need? FairFishing requires funding of USD 1 million in 2016 to 2017, to convert the chosen bottom-up fishery industry building concept to a manual of appropriate tools and facilities to enable local fisher communities to replicate the model and grow the fisheries sector in Somaliland and other areas with similar characteristics, needs and challenges.


Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. Anne Isabella Thackeray Ritchie’s (1837–1919)

FAIRFISHING IN SHORT • In 2013 and 2014, FF set up a fish receiving and processing station in Berbera, Somaliland, capable of handling 4,5 tonnes of fish per day, employing 25 local males and females servicing 37 fishery partners • Our priority in the next couple of years is continuing the development of a sustainable full-service fishery compound, ensuring fresh, safe fish from sea to stomach. This includes the construction of a boat maintenance workshop and establishing training programmes, as well as the other components mentioned under ‘future’ in this prospect. • Our goal is to transfer skills, provide and facilitate the purchase of appropriate equipment, build up facilities on a pay-for-service basis, train facilities managers on maintenance and support the community to organise and improve access to markets through the establishment of a Producer Organisation of Fishermen. • Sustainability is an integral part of our model: FF is non-profit, charging the FF station user only the operational costs of running the station. • The financial support we are seeking is thus not for operations, but for establishing new and necessary FairFishing station components to complete the station, stimulating its fishery-based economy. Kind regards FairFishing


THE PURPOSE FairFishing contributes to the economic development of Somaliland by supporting the development of the fishery sector while promoting the sustainable use of marine resources. We work to fulfil the needs for gainful employment, rightful and sustainable utilisation of marine resources, resulting in job creation in particular amongst youth, poverty alleviation and increased food security.

Fishery, not piracy: We want to make Somaliland a fishery nation.


ABOUT SOMALILAND A YOUNG, UNRECOGNISED DEMOCRACY Somaliland voluntarily joined Somalia in 1960 following independence as a British Protectorate, while never signing on to the Constitution of Somalia. With the collapse of Somalia in 1991, Somaliland withdrew from the union and has made impressive progress in achieving peace, stability, reconciliation and democracy through a process of traditional, bottom-up peace and state building. This bottom-up state building, which was shepherded under the guidance of Somaliland’s traditional authorities and through the tireless efforts of its people, serves both as the basis for a context-specific approach to development partnership with the international community, as well as an example from which to model similar efforts to build peace and stability throughout the Horn of Africa. Somaliland’s continued success in development, maintaining peace and stability is for the benefit not only for Somaliland, but also for the region and the global community at large. Today, Somaliland, though unrecognised, has its own institutions and a constitution. Five free and open elections have been held since 1991, with international observers present at every single one of them.

functioning society. It has made remarkable, visible progress in rebuilding its economy in the last two decades, but there is still a long way to go to achieving prosperity as set out in the Somaliland 2030 vision. With its long coastline and abundance fish in the waters off Somaliland, development of the fisheries sector promises potential for private sector development, as well as income generation and job creation for the population.

FISHERY FEASIBLE AND COMMERCIALLY ATTRACTIVE INDUSTRY A 2014 study highlighted by the World Bank illustrates that fisheries, telecommunications and remittances were both the most feasible and the most commercially attractive industries for future private sector development. Though the study was focused on Puntland and South Central Somalia, it is safe to presume that the trend in Somaliland would be the same. Capital, infrastructure and know-how are lacking for this potential to be unleashed.

BUSY SHIPPING LANE Somaliland is strategically located on the Horn of Africa on the shores of the Gulf of Aden. It is one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes and well endowed with natural marine, mineral and agricultural resources.

Private Sector Investment and Barriers to Growth Analysis in South-Central Somalia and Puntland, May 2013, Adam Smith International


It is relatively stable, putting tremendous efforts into transforming itself into a democratic and well

As a vote of confidence, a number of donors (including the Denmark and the UK) have been investing heavily in Somaliland through innovative funds like the USD 65 million Somaliland Development Fund (SDF) (2013 -2016). The SDF is focused on building the capacity of the state to deliver services, putting the decision making on infrastructure investment


and development planning firmly in the hands of the National Planning Commission. Since its establishment in 2012, Norway and the Netherlands have also joined the Fund. The EU will be joining in 2015. Similarly, the UK, Denmark, and the World Bank have just completed the first round of the Somaliland Business Fund (SDF), a matching funds initiative aimed at stimulating the private sector. 9% of the successful grantees work in the fisheries sector. Somaliland and Ethiopia signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in November 2014, on trade and infrastructure development, including the Berbera corridor (the transport link between Ethiopia and Berbera) and use of the Berbera port.


The Somaliland Development Fund (SDF), supported by the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands and Norway will be revitalising and building the capacity of the Berbera Maritime and Fisheries Academy over the next couple of years, to make it more responsive to the needs of the fisheries sector. The International Labour Organisation (ILO) conducted a Labour Force Survey in 2012 in Borama, Hargeisa and Burao. It found that employment was dominated by the service and sales sector with 60% participation by females and approximately 38% participation by males. A recent impact assessment of FairFishing, conducted by Nordic Consulting Group (NCG), found that that women in particular have taken a shine to benefitting from fish in the service sector, by venturing into preparing and selling fish on the local markets.

Somaliland is currently highly dependent on its livestock market. According to the 2014 Somaliland Special Arrangement Report, livestock amounts to 60% of Somaliland’s GDP. Figures from the Ministry of Finance show an increase in the demand for fish. At the same time, until recently, Somaliland imported 50% of its fish. On the advice of experts such as the World Bank, the Government is actively trying to expand its economic base particularly in the productive sectors beyond the livestock sector, so it can be better protected from external shocks and the dependence on foreign sources of income. According to Mohamed Shukri Jama, Chairman of Somaliland’s Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture, the 2011 drought led to 25% of Somaliland’s 18 million cattle perishing, leading to substantial financial losses and a severe dent in the national and export economy.

ADDRESSING YOUTH UNEMPLOYMENT Overall unemployment, and youth unemployment in particular, is a matter of great concern to the Somaliland Government. 70% of youth below the age of 30 are currently unemployed. In order to address the youth unemployment challenges, the Somaliland Government has established a Youth Fund, job centres, and supported sporting and cultural centres to not only to address unemployment, but also create a space for civic engagement.


Employment challenges, particularly for youth, Labour Force Survey, International Labour Organisation

CLIMATE CHANGES AND FOOD SECURITY According to a 2013 World Bank study, Somaliland imports more than it exports, leaving it vulnerable to conjunctures and consequences of climate changes. Although Somaliland depends largely on imports for its consumption, it has the potential to grow much of its needs with the right investment in research, extension, marketing and infrastructure in agriculture, livestock and fisheries.

INVESTMENT IN BASIC INFRASTRUCTURE Low private and public investments due to business difficulties (access to finance, land and transportation) are one of the causes of low employment. Development partners such as the EU and its member states, the US, the World Bank, the UN agencies and others have been supportive in developing the economic sector, but greater commitment, particularly in facilitating infrastructure, is needed to realise Somaliland’s potential.

SOMALILAND FACTS Copyright Oxfam East Africa

Somalia Human Development Report 2012 and BBC

• C oastline: Roughly 850 km • Somaliland declared its independence in 1991, and has been peaceful ever since • Though not internationally recognised, Somaliland has a working political system, government institutions, a police force and its own currency. • The territory has lobbied hard to win support for its claim to be a sovereign state. • Population: About 4 million • Religion: Sunni Muslim (Islam) • Median age: 17.7 years • Birth rate: 6.2 per woman • The gross domestic product (GDP) for Somaliland is estimated at USD 1,390 and USD 348 per capita, based on the most recent survey conducted by the World Bank together with the Somaliland Ministry of National Planning and Development • Overall unemployment people aged 15-64: 54 % • Population under 30: Over 70 % • Unemployment rate youth 14-29: 70 % • Over 60% of youth have intentions to leave the country for better livelihood opportunities




Somaliland has an 850-kilometre coastline and is surrounded by a sea with an abundance of fish: 450 commercial species migrate every year into the Gulf from the Indian Ocean, only few of which are caught. The species include tuna, snappers, groupers, grunts, trevally, emperors, barracudas, goatfish, parrotfish, Spanish mackerel, sea breams and horse mackerel. Other marine organisms caught occasionally by local fishermen include sea cucumbers, shrimp, lobsters, and edible crabs. In comparison, there are roughly 50 commercial species in Danish waters, a country famed for its fishery industry and global export.

Berbera is the main hub for artisanal fishermen conducting most of the fishing activity in Somaliland. Most of their vessels have no electronic equipment, lights or suitable storage room; Drift nets, hand lines and a bit of yarn is the most common fishing gear. There are no hygiene standards and fish is often several days old before being landed.

Berbera harbour

Snapper and jack fish

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) estimates that a sustainable fishery can catch more than 100,000 tons of fish annually in the Gulf of Aden. Somaliland has the rights to 50% of it. Today, Somaliland fishermen catch less than 5,000 tons per year, sold at low prices. If the catch reaches 50,000 tons/year at double today’s prices, the commercial fisheries from Somaliland will be an industry worth USD 200 million.




Somaliland’s coastline and territorial waters host one of the busiest maritime lanes in the world, for which it has national and international obligations to keep it safe and open. This is a duty that it takes seriously, so much so that it managed to keep it free of piracy infestation, even with limited means. The Somaliland Government has determined that development and management of its marine resources is a priority, as is the fisheries sector in particular. This requires a stronger coast guard to manage illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, as well as Fishery Control and the collection of fishery data to ensure fishery is conducted in a sustainable manner in the future.

The Somaliland Government is taking concrete steps to develop, support and protect this economy, i.e. by cancelling the fishery licences of foreign fishermen who use unsustainable harvesting techniques, and terminating import of frozen fish from Mogadishu in late 2014.

The Government is committed to building a coast guard, and has benefited from the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) and EUCAP Nestor programmes. In December 2014, Somaliland authorities reported to BBC that they had recently seized more than 52 boats fishing illegally in Somaliland waters.


There are 5 months of high season, 4 months of medium and 3 months of little fishing.


The 5 months from late November to late March, where the lowest temperature are 20-25C.


From April to June, with spring rain


From July to September: Very hot and mostly season for lobster and crabs.


The coastline is relatively straight and lacks natural shelters, protected anchorages and landing sites for artisan fishery. Climatic and oceanographic conditions and shifting winds cause unpredictable currents and waves, which pose a constant threat to the fishing fleet. Prevailing high temperatures through the year, high humidity and the difficulty in accessing the richest fishing areas accelerate fish spoilage and reduces chances of selling catches. Also, there is no fishery map of the Gulf of Aden, making it virtually impossible to know what lies on the seabed.


THE DANISH ORGANISATION The NGO FairFishing board consists of hands-on practitioners from the worlds of shipping, development, Somali diaspora, business strategy, finance, navy, education and fishery. We are not a business and do not profit financially from our efforts. We are financed by Danish and international donors who support our practical ‘nuts and bolts’ approach to a complex area and issue. We have received generous donations in the form of capital, manpower, equipment and service. Volunteerism is our backbone.


Chairman Claus Bindslev, Strategic advisor and CEO at Bindslev A/S Board Member Per Gullestrup, Ship owner and Partner in Clipper Group

Vice-Chairman Mahad Farah Aden, Internal auditor in the Danish National Bank

Board Member Knud Vilby, International development expert, editor, writer and journalist

Vice-Chairman Nils Wang, Rear Admiral and President of the Royal Danish Defence Academy

Board Member Said Hussein, Secretary General of the Somali Diaspora Organisation

Board member Elsebeth Krogh, CEO, Centre for Culture and Development

THE SECRETARIAT The secretariat consists of Chief Secretariat Officer Carl-Jørgen Bindslev, a full-time volunteer, and Partnerships and Communications officer Toyah Hunting in a 60% position. Fishery project manager Kurt Berthelsen-Christensen and the local organisation’s Management Team run FairFishing on a daily basis. Fishery project manager Kurt Bertelsen Christensen and Somaliland President Ahmed Mohamed Mohamoud (Silanyo)


THE FAIRFISHING METHOD – STARTING WITH DEMAND, CONTEXT AND LOCAL OWNERSHIP WORKING TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE FISHERIES SECTOR – PARTNERS WITH A COMMON GOAL We cooperate with anyone sharing our purpose of developing commercially viable fishery in Somaliland; fishermen, fishery companies, local and national organisations, businesses, ministries and authorities, on a 100% non-profit basis.


We focus on the first two steps of the fishery value chain, catching and treating fish. Boats and equipment

SKILLS AND INFRASTRUCTURE GO HAND IN HAND We believe that we must begin with skills and will move on to consolidating and scaling hardware when the fishery tradition and skills are established. One reason fishery never quite came to Somaliland – in spite of the abundance of fish in the sea – is the geographical and topographical situation that makes fishery particularly challenging. The long coastline from Djibouti in the West to the Horn in the East is practically inhospitable, with few natural places for fishermen to seek shelter. The lack of coral reef, natural ports and the weather is likely to be blamed for the missing fishery culture on this coast. The Somaliland coastline resembles the West Coast of the Danish peninsula Jutland. Here, ports had to be built directly off the coast to exploit the vast North Sea Fish Stocks.




Basing our concept on the Hanstholm model and simple dragnet, long line, trolling, lobster pots and hand line fishing up along the coast, FairFishing decided to start the first stage of construction of the Somali fishing in the harvesting sector. Equipment, expertise and skills transfer are three key elements to the project. When fish is caught on a larger scale and the fishermen and the newly born industry begin demanding a better framework, the work begins building the ports and consolidating the necessary infrastructure.

STEP-BY-STEP TO LOCAL OWNERSHIP From the very beginning, we have worked for the FairFishing concept to live on locally in a format that is relevant and financially sustainable. Whole sale

Consumption The fishery life cycle

First, we dealt with the need for onshore infrastructure. Now, our focus is on the infrastructure at sea: Transferring skills to fishermen, ship owners and especially the young people who wish to enter the fishery sector. We are also building the local organisation together with the local fishermen, thereby aiding them in their efforts to join forces on matters that relate to their


Basic processing facilities inside FairFishing station

Processing in action

FairFishing station infrastructure


trade so that they are better able to access markets and benefit through collective action, and ultimately be capable of and willing to take over local FairFishing structures and activities in 2017.

OUR REFERENCE MODEL AND METHOD: ARAL LAKE FISHERY - FROM DEAD TO THRIVING While the Somaliland context is specific and requires its own, tailored solutions, FairFishing’s fishery project manager Kurt Berthelsen-Christensen comes with a portfolio of experiences in development of fishery-based economies. We largely base our work on the Lake Aral model developed by and the NGO Living Sea (Levende Hav).

Berthelsen-Christensen was the manager of the development of fishery in Lake Aral in Kazakhstan from 1996-2008. Here, the first phase was also to document the existence of high quality fish, to introduce new equipment and training and to assist in organising local fishermen. Further phases dealt with developing the full infrastructure, including systems for processing and marketing. A local fishery centre was established. The whole organisation was turned over to local cooperatives and the fishery association Aral Tenizi, still alive and kicking today.


Proving the fact that high quality fish does in fact exist in Lake Aral, and that it could be caught with the new equipment introduced by Berthelsen-Christensen and his team, with the knowledge and knowhow they brought with them, this phase also proved that many fishermen had the desire to fish in new ways, but they were poorly organised and lacked infrastructure.

PHASE 2 1998 – 1999 (USD 1 MILLION)

Fishery foundation and organisation

PHASE 3 2000 – 2006 (USD 4,5 MILLION)

Established the entire fishing value chain, trained fishermen and built the infrastructure around the lake. Establishment of fishery centre and commercial fishing business in Aralsk.

PHASE 4 2006 – 2008 (USD 1,5 MILLION)

Evaluation and transferral of resources and responsibility to 35 fishing cooperatives, coordinated by the local fishing association Aral Tenizi From 2008 onwards, a modern, Kazakh-owned commercial fishery industry has thrived in Aralsk. Aral Tenizi, the local fishery association has received USD 1,9 million from the Japanese Development Bank and the World Bank to further develop fishery, and substantially upgraded the infrastructure and hardware necessary for it to grow. It is now a booming business, providing livelihoods for thousands of fishermen, and it started with one simple and complex task: Proving that there were fish to be caught and transferring the necessary skills for local people to catch, manage and sell them.


THE SUPPORTERS FairFishing’s results so far have relied on generous donations from the private sector. With an annual budget of roughly USD 400.000, FairFishing is not a large operation by international standards. Our annual report is readily available upon request, as is

CAPITAL • • • • •

A.P. Møllerske Støttefond Arsenault Family Foundation A/S Dampskibsselskabet Orients Fond The Commemorative Coin Foundation Helle and Per Gullestrup

EQUIPMENT AND SERVICES • • • • • • • • • • • •


Bindslev NextStep Bornholm fishermen’s equipment C.F Møller Clipper Group Container Providers International Daconet Danish Crown Danish Fishery Auctions, Thyborøn Designit Dystan Graphic Services E. Espersen Fish Falck

the specified budgets for the items not yet financed listed under ‘Future’. The following corporations, foundations and individuals support FairFishing with capital and equipment/ services: • • • •

Jørgen and Viggo Harboe Jørgen Steen Nielsen Livia Foundation The Anniversary Foundation for Grundfos A/S

• • • • • • • • • • • •

Fiskekortet Doctor Søren McNair Lawyer Bruno Månsson from Sirius Lemvig Data Linco - Freight Logistics A/S Longji Company Mærsk Line Mono voce graphic design and programming PIL Shipping Pon Power A/S Tejn trawls and Net United Arab Shipping Company (UASC)



A fact-finding mission in March 2012, back before FairFishing was formally organised in any form, found the main challenge being securing and building a main harbour with fish processing facilities, from scratch.

FairFishing Somaliland was established in January 2013 as an international NGO in Somaliland, and registered as required by law with the Ministry of National Planning and Development. It is in charge of running the FairFish station on a daily basis: Managing and hiring employees in a transparent manner, handling and recruiting partners, fish processing etc.


• Target: 1 tonne of fish per day processed at station by the Autumn of 2013 • First half-year: Get basic station infrastructure up and running and test (ice machine, manpower, building station) • Second half-year: Stable station operations • Concept development: With proven concept FairFishing moves on to a full-scale operation • Local capacity: 25 employees at FairFishing station, station capacity 4.5 tonnes of fish per day and 9 tonnes of ice

All roughly 25 employees (exact number dependant on the season and level of activity) are local; both male and female. The management team has a background in fishery and/or management.

The station is composed of five 40-foot reefer containers, welded together


Mohamed Osman Ahmed Executive Director, Somaliland CPC Office Dr. Sacad Cali Shire Minister of National Planning and Development Edna Aden Ismail Director and founder of the Edna Adan Maternity Hospital, Ex Minister of Foreign Affairs

The FairFishing Management Team, from left to right: Fishery Director Jama Ahmed Ashur, Country Director Yusuf Abdilahi Gullied, Chief Financial Officer, Mahad Ahmed Adan

LOCAL ADVISORY BOARD Established in 2014, the Advisory Board consists of influential, widely representative central figures in Somaliland. The high level and informal advisory board help FairFishing make the strategically right decisions to benefit Somaliland fishery, fishermen and community as a whole in a fishery-based economy.

Ahmed Farah Jama Dahabshiil Human Resource Manager in Somaliland Osman Sheikh Abdi Ex Minister of Mineral Resources & Water during Maxamed Yuusuf Waabeeye Member of the Parliament in Somaliland Farhan Haji Ali CEO Horn Cable Ali Jama Farah Minister of Fisheries

The Advisory Board meets every three months (or as needed) and advises us on the continuation of our fishery operations in a way that supports environmental, social and ethical standards and working conditions in and around the fishery sector in Somaliland.

FAIRFISHING – A RIPPLE EFFECT “Within a very short period of time, FairFishing has changed the way the fishing communities operate in Berbera. Such practical results-focused efforts respond directly to key policy priorities identified by the Government in the National Development Plan (2012 -2016), and the Somaliland Special Arrangement 2013 – 2016, a part of the Somali Compact endorsed at the Ministerial level New Deal Conference on the Somali Compact in Brussels on the 16th September, 2013. With a goal to transfer skills to local communities across the value chain, FairFishing is working with Somalianders to build a sustainable model for fisheries development within Somaliland for the benefit of its people, particularly in relation to employment for women and youth. FairFishing is providing a real alternative that makes a difference at the local level and can potentially make a difference to Somaliland’s economy.” Rima Das Pradhan-Blach, Special Adviser, to The Minister of National Planning and Development, Somaliland


FAIRFISHING RESULTS SO FAR An upgraded fisheries sector, better household living standards and economic development – these are some of our documented effects so far. A recent impact assessment by Nordic Consulting Group has consulted involved fishermen and boat owners on the results of the project. • 55 out 56 survey participants have responded that they have experienced an increase in income of (on average) 98% from they joined FairFishing as partners in 2013, until the assessment was performed in 2014 • Small- and medium sized fishery companies are using our facilities, and benefitting from them • 50 vendors (hotels, restaurants, entrepreneurs) purchase fish from registered FairFishing partners This tells us that FairFishing is meeting market demands within a very short period. “This increased income has allowed households to enjoy a range of benefits including building of houses, paying for children’s education, having a more secured work life, getting married, and a general feeling of being more encouraged about work.

An increase in fish consumption among inhabitants of Berbera has been reported, which is considered positive from several perspectives (nutrition, climate change, food security). The increase in consumption has also implied an increased number of women making a living on selling the fish locally in Berbera. This was a positive surprise since most people in the fishing industry are male. There has been a wide interest by boat owners to join FairFishing, and about 85% of all boat owners in Berbera are partners of the station. The quality of the fish has also improved, because of the improved cold storage facility – both while at the harbour, but also in relation to the transport of the fish to the major local markets. The Government of Somaliland has been highly appreciative of the FairFishing Station, referring to it as a “model” for other fisheries projects in Somaliland.” Julie Thaarup, Nordic Consulting Group, January 2015

The far majority of partners of the FairFishing station have increased their turnover and expanded their businesses in terms of staff and boats. Also, the assessment has found that the awareness and appreciation of fish as a valuable nutritional asset has increased in the area.

Many fish vendors have popped up in Berbera lately


PRESENT: 2015 STABILISING AND SCALING OPERATIONS This year, we are stabilising and scaling existing operations and fully splitting the fishery compound financially from the development project. This is one of the first step towards full local ownership of the FairFishing compound and concept. As of late 2014, the FairFishing station is financially sustainable, in terms of the income covering the expenses and wages concerned with running it. However, there are certain development costs related to developing the components not yet in place at the compound, yet vital to the FairFishing concept - like a solar panel system, a boat maintenance workshop and other parts listed under ‘Future’.

cost prices plus the cost of running the PSU. This income is transferred to a closed account, and can only be used to purchase additional equipment for sale in the PSU, by the yet to be formalised Producer Organisation FairFishing (POFF). The equipment is bought and collected in Denmark, and sold at low prices that cover expenses related to the PSU. FairFishing has always been, and will remain, non-profit.



Stock room at our Partner Supply Unit Fishermen knitting nets

Packing containers in Jutland

The PSU is a purchasing unit for our partners, the first of its kind to sell equipment to fishermen at their own harbour. It opened in January 2015. Our FairFishing partners - 37 registered fishery companies - pay a low price for the gear, namely


Here’s Regin Christiansen in the midst of performing fishery theory training.

In 2015, we are providing skills transfer for our partners fishermen in sustainable fishing methods, as well as providing technical assistance on the development of practical and professional quality criteria

for managing, weighing, pricing and efficient cutting, filleting and cooling/ freezing fish. We introduce new gear and systems as sustainable alternatives to fishing with drift nets, and train fishermen in their use. The fishery in Somaliland is characterised by the exclusive use of drift nets. Even the simplest forms of electronic equipment, such as GPS and sonars, are absent. Without knowledge of the seabed or GPS and sonar, it is impossible for local fishermen to catch species that do not live at or near the bottom, the vast majority of commercial tropical species, including of course seafood, live at the bottom.

Name Profession Jama Ashur FF Somaliland Fishery Manager Yousuf Gullied FF Somaliland Country Director Khadar Haji CEO National fisheries LTD Jama Ahmed Owner Al aamin fishing company Farhan Bihi Owner Soma fishing company Ismail saarsaar Owner Alfurqan fishing company Ismail Hassan Owner Hodma fishing Company From the very beginning, we have worked for the FairFishing concept to live on locally in a format that is relevant and financially sustainable. We build and strengthen local Fishermen’s organisational capacity, enabling a fair living for everyone who chooses this livelihood path by establishing Producer Organisation FairFishing (POFF).

Danish and Somali skippers work with us onsite and at sea in Berbera, aiding us with this training programme.

No one-size-fits all when it comes to building a sustainable local fishery organisation, or indeed a sustainable local organisation of any kind.


This is one of the reasons why FairFishing has not chosen ONE partner to work with, but has rather involved everyone working in local fishery to BUILD the necessary organisation to become this partner. In financing efforts so far, we have been asked to provide this final model, time and time again, and that we have chosen not to do so has been interpreted as us not having a plan. We rather see it as carefully doing our homework, in order to figure out what works in the Somaliland context. Had we pre-decided the model, we’d have risked clan power struggles corroding development, and the survival of the fittest squeezing out the smaller actors, whom we also want to benefit.

Much needed additional cold storage on the way

Two reefer containers - in addition to the five already in place - have been donated by Maersk Line, and will be fitted with freezer components, increasing the FairFishing compound’s cold capacity by 30 %. This storage is very necessary: In late 2014, fishery stopped due to our current storage capacity reaching its maximum, leaving our partners without a place to store their catches.


Instead, we are facilitating the building a Producer Organisation of FairFishing (POFF) that is able to sustainably run fishery in Somaliland in the years to come. We are doing it together with the local fishermen, aiming to aid them in their efforts to join forces on matters that relate to their trade. USING EXISTING MODELS Producer Organisations (POs) are the predominant way fishermen organise themselves all over the world. The EU’s common fisheries policy, which covers 17 countries and a total of 160,000 fishermen, includes 185 POs covering all areas “wild” fishery. Now, we are using this organisational model that has been tried, tested and has prevailed as a functioning one as a basic model for organising and capacity building Somaliland fishery stakeholders.


In October 2014, we began the process of engaging our partners using the FairFish Station in the early steps of formalising POFF, in the shape of open meetings and invited to join a steering group to lead the development towards formal establishment. Seven members stepped forward to take the reins as a working group to plan this formalisation of POFF. Two employees from FairFishing in Berbera chair the working group. Our efforts to establish POFF compliment other efforts currently going on initiated by other parties’ aiming to establish a fishery-based economy in the area. We will continue to include key stakeholders at all levels in planning, implementing and carrying out the partnership intervention: National, regional and local authorities, fishery companies, fishery organisations and not least the fishermen and the staff employed at the FairFish Station. At the general assembly in March 2015, the adoption of laws and regulations and election of the Board and President will take place. With solid development and establishment of geographically and socio-politically appropriate charters and rules, a functioning POFF can be up and running in 2015. POFF will be strengthened and refined until 2017. The FairFishing board and secretariat will continue supporting POFF with troubleshooting and consolidation efforts for as long as it takes to ensure sustainable operations. All decisions, procedures and planning for the future local FairFishing organisation will be undertaken directly by the key stakeholders who are the members: The FairFishing board and secretariat acts as facilitator, strengthening and boosting the local organisation with training, knowledge and structure.


Q&A Q: What are the criteria for becoming a FairFishing partner in Somaliland? A: Partners must have a fishery licence, be a legal entity and commit to the FairFishing partnership contract Q: What is FairFishing’s capacity for ice and cold storage? A: As of January 2015, 10 tons in freezer (-18), and 30 tons in 0 degrees (providing everything is packaged properly) Q: What is the cost of storing fish at FairFishing? A: The cost is calculated based on the production cost (mainly electricity) combined with the cost of providing the manpower to perform the service. The current price is USD80 per 24 hours in chilling room. Q: Does FairFishing keep track of types and species of fish? A: Not yet, we only track whether they are black or white. This is a gap and a need, which we are looking for partners to help fill. We’d be most interested in collaborating with marine biology researched interested in mapping the waters/species of the Gulf of Aden, as this adds a service that could benefit all stakeholders involved in fishery in the region. Q: Is storage capacity sufficient? A: Absolutely not: We can only freeze filets, and the lack of storage space is hindering fishery.

FUTURE: 2016-2017 FairFishing requires additional funding of USD 1 million in 2016 to 2017. This includes converting the chosen bottom-up fishery industry building concept into a manual that makes it, if not easily, than at least potentially, replicable in other areas of similar attributes.

What the FairFishing compound will look like in 2017 - pending financing


One of the main expenses at the FairFishing compound is electricity: While the rest of the world pays an average $0.15-0.30 per kilowatt-hour, Somaliland’s residents pay $1 per kWh. We’re looking into short-term ways of bringing down the huge annual amount that goes into electricity, like insulating the station. But in the long run, our dream is a permanent and sustainable solar solution. It makes sense: The sun always shines, and the investment pays for itself within six months. Fishery in Somaliland really has the potential to be fuelled by the sun. Investment in renewable energy is one of the local government’s priorities, closely linked to the economic growth agenda; the region’s antiquated power grid is indeed constraining growth.

Solar panel system at Berbera Hospital

Amount (in USD)


We’re looking for partners that can help us finance and set up a mini grid consisting of 300 square metres of solar panels on the FairFishing compound roof. The estimated necessary funding is USD


200.000 for a 100kW facility, and the offers that we have received so far indicate that the investment will pay for itself by 2017.


Like the other elements of the FairFishing concept, the solar roof system is replicable as a potential source of electricity for the other processing station’s that will inevitably take form along the Somaliland coastline in the years to come.


FairFishing was hired by the World Bank to do train local fishermen in 2014

Amount (in USD)

A dhow, a typical FairFishing partner vessel

Amount (in USD)


With an increase in equipment and fishery activities, comes the need for maintenance. We have room for a boat maintenance workshop in the FairFishing compound, and pending financing in the area of USD 200.000, we could offer boat and fishery equipment maintenance services to all FairFishing partners, at cost prices. This investment includes building a boat landing structure by the boat maintenance workshop, where vessels can lie whilst being repaired It would provide the insights and skills to maintain their own gear, mitigating the risk of foreign hardware donations being left to rot once the foreign aid partner leaves. A mobile maintenance component could also be added. A possible operating model could be POFF running the mobile maintenance workshop, offering ‘light’ services (meaning services that do not entail the heavy machinery that can only be immobile) to fishermen and boat owners along the coast.


The Somaliland fishery sector needs capacity building and professionalising if the Horn of Africa is to benefit from its marine resources and become a de facto fishery nation. In addition, the fishery today must of course also use the new technologies, which is GPS and plotter with associated electronic charts and fishing and to the building of the electronic fish short, they need a sounder, which cooperates with the GPS. It is the equipment Fair Fishing now introduces in the fishing and in the same time the introduction of a system to construct electronic fishing map. A system that over the coming years will built and developed new electronic navigational charts for the Gulf of Aden, map that will show the exact water depth, rocks and reefs, hard and soft bottom, wreck - whatever is on the bottom of the Gulf of Aden Along with the equipment Fair Fishing, offer a training program for the use of both the hardware and software and training in how to mount equipped with swings (transducer) and power supply. If it is not, the substantial results achieved so far will crumble, and potential spin-off effects will not see the light of day. There is massive potential in jobs being created throughout the fishery value chain, if only those involved are trained, educated and organised. Given our current levels of funding, we are not able to meet the needs of the fishermen and stakeholders in the fishery industry to based outside of Berbera for training and skills transfer.


With funding of a minimum of USD 100.000, we could offer already interested parties trainee services at the FairFishing station, offering those who are considering fishery as a potential profession trainee positions at the station and on board our partners’ vessels.

of consequences: Trucks cannot reach the sea, and fishermen have a hard time getting their catches on land. As it is now, even smaller skiffs sizes 8,5 metres (the predominant vessel amongst our fishery partners), can only into the harbour when the tide is high.

Young people would be recruited locally (along the Somaliland cost) to learn about basic seamanship and fishery.

There are other initiatives aiming to rebuild this harbour, and we’d prefer that to happen to us taking it on as a FairFishing task. But time is of the essence, and the lack of a functioning harbour area is making the landing of fish a hard, even dangerous task.

Once this trainee programme is completed, we will proceed with consolidating it and further developing our educational programme together with fishery academies and educational institutions who wish to proceed with structuring fishery training as a fixed part of their curriculum, i.e. the Berbera Marine College.

According to our calculations, a minimum funding of USD 300.000 would finance a functional, inter-rim jetty that could work for a number of years whilst the other initiatives to fully restore the jetty are initiated and completed.



Amount (in USD)



Spreading the word to the local population of the benefits and easy access to fish is vital if Somaliland is to be become a fishery-based economy where average citizens purchase fish. As a first step, we propose hosting a FairFish festival: It could enlighten public and political opinion makers about the importance of fish as an extremely valuable but untapped resource. The festival will increase the awareness and understanding of fish as a healthy and cheap ingredient in the food diet both on a daily basis and as part of celebrations and festivities. Fish as part of the economy is vital focal point, both at the individual level for fishermen and other locals employed in the ‘from sea to stomach’-cycle, and at the national level, showing the great export potential of fish, as well as its role as an important employment creating factor in Somaliland.

There is a dire need to establish a secure Berbera harbour pathway from sea to land

Amount (in USD)


The Berbera jetty and harbour area are crumbling. There is a dire need to dig out the harbour and establish a secure pathway from sea to land. The lack of decent harbour infrastructure has a number

The festival will benefit from the close links between the Somali diaspora and Somaliland. Somalis in Europe and the US are much more used to enjoying fish as part of the diet, and they are already influencing attitudes and traditions in Somaliland. The festival will be arranged in cooperation with central and potential stakeholders in Berbera and Hargeisa, such as the relevant public authorities, hotels and restaurants and educational institutions. Indicators for success will be the ability of the


festival to make fish an issue being discussed and being moved up on the national agenda, on all levels of society. In a longer perspective it will result in a growing ability to attract local and foreign investments into development of the fishery sector, both from more traditional commercial investors and from members of the Somali diaspora who want to support a more sustainable local economic development. The FairFish festival will also have a clear advocacy and educative function in terms of the nutritional value of fish, aiming to spawn interest in and curiosity around fish that currently has a low standing in the region.


Our awareness raining strategy will also focus on the need for quality control through data collection and biological monitoring. FairFishing already tracks the type and amount of species coming to the station, and wants to make this available to institutions that will use it to develop and structure a beneficial model for Somaliland Fishery’s sustainable management. Another spin off of FairFishing activities is the development of a Gulf of Aden fishery map: The first of its kind. Fiskekortet.dk has provided us with electronic equipment that we fit onto partners’ vessels as of February 2015, effectively mapping the ocean floor as the ship sails. This data will be available to our fishery partners to ensure effective and sustainable fishery, and can also be used in efforts to develop quality control and biological monitoring. We are currently venturing into a partnership with the Veterinary school in Sheikh, where students and staff here aids FairFishing employees with quality control training, and we offer them the premises and activities necessary for them to upgrade their knowledge of fishery in general All of the above are components of our awareness raining strategy, and we are looking for marine biologists, educational institutions and scientists/ researchers interested in using our collected data for the purpose of developing a local sustainable fishery management practice.


To be decided

FairFishing’s focus is Somaliland. However, the concept is feasible, replicable and scalable in other areas and in other parts of Africa, and a FairFishing Manual that disseminates the project experience and


enables flexible copying it in other regions will be finalised in 2017. The FairFishing concept is still relatively new, and will not be finalised until all the abovementioned components are financed and completed in 2017. A manual has the potential to provide local governments, municipalities and other coastal societies with a sustainable and profit making model for the fisheries in the country. The project is enhancing cooperation among the partners of the station, with the aim of building the foundation for local ownership and management of the station in the future. We are looking for partners to aid the development, completion and publishing of this manual. Investment total needed: Dependent on production and distribution model


1 million

SOMALILAND: A FISHERY NATION Berbera fishery update October 2014 “A fishery nation is a country where fishery is vital to the country’s economy, or where its fishery is a sizeable part of the world’s overall fishery. Somaliland is on its way to becoming a fishery nation. It has the long coastline, an abundance of fish in the sea and now also a growing industry of professional fishermen. One year ago, the FairFish Station took in the first load of fish and provided the first batch of ice. Since then, the station on the Berbera harbour has produced 500 tons of ice and received more than 300 tons of fish. October will be a record month, both in terms of ice and fish. By the end of the month, we’ll have received 60 tons of fish and provided the same amount of ice to our partners at cost price. In this same year, we have partnered with 37 fishermen and fishery companies, with a collective capacity of more than 100 vessels. They’re not all active, but the ones who are have in October paid us roughly USD 12.000 for our services ice, weighing and storing fish. Our partners who use our fileting, packaging and freezing services have paid roughly USD 2.500 for our services in this same period. There are now 25 employees at the FairFish station. Six of them are employed to filet fish. 60 tons of fish - the October catch in total - brings in about USD 180.000 when sold on the local market. The price is low at the moment, as the greater part of the catch is tuna and sailfish. Kingfish, snapper and gropers would retail at about a quarter of a million dollars. Our partners pay FairFishing 4-7% of the price they get for the fish on the market for expenses and production costs. These vary, mainly due to the exceptionally high cost of electricity and the extensive need for it to keep fish cool in the tropical climate. Compared to Danish fishery, production costs are low, but they do indeed cover the actual costs of providing the FairFishing services: Water, manpower and electricity, whereas the latter accounts for more than half of the expenses. FairFishing does not support or in any way pay for our partners’ actual fishery operations, but we do

support the fishery itself in terms of offering equipment at cost prices and the know how that helps the fishermen get the most out of their efforts. This is vital to the development of Somaliland as a fishery nation, as there is little public financing available for its development. FairFishing supports the development of a new sustainable trade that can help provide fresh fish each and every day. The on-land fishery infrastructure is now there, and has the capacity to receive, treat and distribute enough fish to supply restaurants and hotels an extent that makes the import of frozen fish from Mogadishu by air unnecessary. According to the World Bank, Somaliland imports more than 50% of the fish they need in this manner, whilst the fishermen in the Gulf of Aden only catch 5% of the fish available in this sea. FairFishing aims to balance this out and create jobs whilst doing it. With unemployment at 70%, this is necessary. So: after a year FairFish station activity, it is fair to conclude that despite the many risks and concerns, FairFishing has proven its concept. 80% of the Berbera fishermen are now our partners and use our services. Fishery is growing, there is an increase in both fishermen and vessels, and more and more international fishery supports projects and schemes are on their way. With the on-land infrastructure established and functioning, we now embark on our second phase: Capacity building the fishery itself, on vessels, at sea. It is becoming increasingly realistic that our concept will achieve its goal of producing and providing 1500 tons of ice and treating 1500 tons of fish per year. A beneficial side effect will be the general improvement of the state of the overall Somaliland fishery from 2500 tons a year to 10.000 tons per year. With an average price of USD 4-5 per kilo, this amounts to an annual income of roughly USD 45 million. In a country where the 2014 state budget is roughly four times that, it must be safe to say that Somaliland qualifies as being a fishery nation.” Kurt Berthelsen-Christensen, Fishery Project Manager and skipper, FairFishing




Journalist Jakob Johannsen, who is married to a Somali woman, contacts Claus Bindslev with a proposition to “turn Somali pirates into fishermen”. Claus Bindslev and Jakob Johannsen contact international development journalist, author and fellow Dane Knud Vilby. Together they agree to create an organisation that will establish a fishing project in Somalia.

Contact established with Kurt Berthelsen-Christensen, a skipper with significant experience in fishery and civil society capacity in Eritrea and the Aral Sea, who contributes with his specialist knowledge in further establishment of FairFishing.

DECEMBER 2009 – MARCH 2010: WHO JOINS, AND WHO LEADS? Meetings with the Danish Minister for Development Cooperation Ulla Tørnæs and The Danish Ship Owners Association in March 2010, who support the idea, in principle. Contact established with Christian Balslev-Olesen, Head of UNICEF in Somalia, in early 2010. Danish strategic advisers Bindslev A/S supply secretarial assistance whilst FairFishing takes shape. Johannsen is diagnosed with cancer. From 2012, the secretariat function is mainly carried out by Toyah Hunting, with Carl-Jørgen Bindslev, having recently retired, joining as a full-time volunteer in 2013.

SPRING 2011: FINDING THE RIGHT COMPETENCES TO BUILD SOMALILAND’S FISHERY INDUSTRY Johannsen oversees further development of the FairFishing concept, with Bindslev A/S. One of Johannsen’s most important contacts Nils Wang, Rear Admiral and President of the Royal Danish Defence Academy, an avid believer in issues at sea having to be dealt with on land.

JUNE 2011: TWO SOMALIS JOIN THE TEAM The Danish Ship Owners Association pens a letter of support, and recommend recruiting Somali nationals Said Hussein, General Secretary of Somali Diaspora Organisation (SDO) and Mahad Aden, internal auditor at Denmark’s National Bank. Both join the yet formally unestablished FairFishing task force.


OCTOBER 2011: THE BIRTH OF SOMALI FAIR FISHING The first Board consists of Claus Bindslev, Jakob Johannsen, international development professional, author and journalist Knud Vilby, Said Hussein and Mahad Aden. Christian Balslev-Olesen joins later. Said Hussein and The Danish Ship Owners Association launch the NGO Somali Fair Fishing in Brussels, during a conference on “A holistic approach to combating piracy”.

OCTOBER 2011 – MARCH 2012: FINDING WAYS TO REACH THE GOAL Further development of the concept, and funding applications. Introductions to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) and the Danish ambassador in Nairobi in February 2012. An article on the project in Danish newspaper Politiken Weekly results in the donation of USD 20.000 from the American Arsenault Family Foundation, for a fact-finding mission in Somaliland. Purpose: Is fishery in Somalia even possible – if so, how?

MARCH 2012: FIRST TRIP TO SOMALILAND Week long fact finding mission to Somaliland. Johannsen too ill to participate. Upon arriving home, the team pens the first project description based on the facts found indicating that there is no existing infrastructure, and that a processing facility offering ice and fish processing at cost prices must be built from scratch. A decision is made not to choose one local partner, because the fishery and the operators are too fragile: Choosing one partner would potentially create an autocracy: SFF openly expresses that

anyone is invited to cooperate, as long as they share the same ambition as SFF: turning Somaliland into a nation of fishermen. The principle of open inclusion is key.



Gullestrup, whose own experience of having a ship highjacked by pirates was the basis of the movie ‘The Hijacking’, donates USD 50.000 towards a Proof of Concept phase: Demonstrating that one tonne of fish can be caught, processed and sold every day for an entire month. Should the project succeed, it would validate the assumption that there is great potential for stable income and jobs in the fishery industry in Somaliland. The Proof of Concept phase is a success. Carl-Jørgen Bindslev joins the team permanently as Chief Secretariat Officer, a fulltime volunteer position that he still holds.

Founding father Jakob Johannsen passes away.

JUNE 16, 2012: POSTHUMOUS RECOGNITION FOR JOHANNSEN Johannsen’s children receive the LIVIA award on his behalf: “The price is awarded to Jakob Johannsen, initiator of Somali Fair Fishing, a project, which embodies one of the most solid and beautiful principles in the peaceful solving of conflicts: Searching for the origins of a conflict, thinking creatively and introducing original solutions – instead of attempting to combat darkness with darkness or surrender completely. In an escalated crisis, where pirates terrorising of the Aden Bay are fought with military force, Somali FairFishing shows the world another way and identifies the reasons behind the conflict: the breakdown of Somali fishery and the major unemployment it creates. Somali Fair Fishing strives for a solution that can convert young would-be Somali pirates to fishermen and thereby show them, that fishery is a profitable and far safer livelihood than piracy. The LIVIA Foundation appreciates the fact that both Danes and Somalis are running Somali Fair Fishing, while attempting to cooperate with local authorities and organisations and establishing local ownership of the facilities selling, producing and exporting the products of Somali Fair Fishing.”

AUGUST 2012: SKIPPER KURT IS EMPLOYED Kurt Bertelsen-Christensen becomes SFF’s first and (until late 2014) only Danish employee. He is hired as the fishery project manager, and heads the development of activities and structures onsite in Somaliland from late 2012 onwards.

DECEMBER 2012 – OCTOBER 2013: THE FAIRFISH STATION BEGINS TO MATERIALISE A processing facility is developed; using five 40-foot reefer containers donated Mærsk Line as the source of infrastructure. An ice machine is purchased. The organisation changes its name from Somali Fair Fishing to FairFishing to avoid political discussions on the issue of Somaliland’s relation to Somalia. FairFishing receives an increasing amount of both in-kind and economic donations. Negotiations are moving forward between the MFA/Danida and FairFishing, with FairFishing thus far receiving no public funding. FairFishing is nominated for the INDEX/design to improve life prize, in the community category.

OCTOBER 23, 2013: THE FAIRFISHING STATION OPENS FOR BUSINESS 20 people are employed at the station within the first year. Wages are paid for by the many fishery companies who sign on as partners in order to receive ice, processing services, storage rooms etc. at cost prices. FairFishing is non-profit. In 2013, FairFishing Somaliland is established as an international NGO, while cooperating with the Somaliland Ministry of Fisheries in a mutual understanding of the need to develop fishery in Somaliland.


AUTUMN 2013 – SPRING 2014: UNDERSTANDING WHAT WE ARE AND WHO WE ARE – THE STATION STILL REQUIRES FUNDING TO REACH ITS FULL POTENTIAL A series of negotiations between FairFishing and Danida, notably Minister for Development Cooperation Christian Friis Bach Christian Friis Bach, take place. Attempts are made to find a sustainable financial model. Negotiations stall upon the resignation of the Minister for Development Cooperation Christian Friis Bach Christian Friis Bach in November 2013. Television programme DR Horisont broadcast a documentary on FairFishing in May 2014. A governmental delegation from Mogadishu visits FairFishing in Copenhagen, wanting to replicate FairFishing’s concept of FairFishing in other location along the Somalia coastline.

JUNE 2, 2014: A WELCOME DONATION The A.P. Møllerske Støttefond donates USD 500.000 FairFishing, at a critical time. The station is up and running, but it has been necessary to reduce the local employees’, as FairFishing is running out of money. A plan of action is established for the period 2014-2017: Consolidating existing activities, training and developing the capabilities of the fishermen, ending in a transition to local ownership in 2017.

OCTOBER 2014: THE BOARD EXPANDS, THE EFFECT OF FAIRFISHING IS MEASURED AND NEW PARTNERSHIPS ESTABLISHED The CEO of Centre for Culture and Development, Elsebeth Krogh, joins the Board. A master student from Copenhagen University’s African Studies joins FairFishing with a view on creating a manual for the development of fishery infrastructure in fragile nations, in collaboration with Toyah Hunting, who now heads FairFishing’s Partnerships and Communication on a part-time basis. Mærsk Line donates USD 34.000 towards an Impact Assessment of FairFishing activities by Nordic Consulting Group (NCG), aimed at finding the actual local effects of FairFishing’s efforts on Somaliland in terms of heightened income, employment and reduction of poverty.


NOVEMBER/ DECEMBER 2014 FF ships two containers with equipment, donated and purchased equipment at a total value of USD 500.000, to Berbera. It is to be sold to our 37 local fishery-partners at cost price through the Partner Supply Unit, currently under construction in the FairFishing Berbera compound. Further developing the FairFishing concept in 2016 and 2017, towards a fully functioning and locally run fishery compound, will cost USD 1 million. This is not yet financed, and in an ideal world, we are looking for one or few partners willing to fund this amount towards the components mentioned under ‘Future’ in this prospect. In 2017, a manual will be produced and made readily available to others who wish to use our open source and plug and play concept to establish simple and efficient fishery infrastructure in other locations with similar characteristics to the ones we operate within in Somaliland.


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