Mozambique is losing at least $60m a year because of illegal fishing, the country's minister of the sea, inland waters and fisheries, Agostinho Mondlane, has reportedly said.
According to Mozambique News Agency, Mondlane revealed this during the 7th meeting of Fish-i Africa in the capital Maputo recently.
"We should take on individual and collective responsibility for defending the noble interests of our peoples and nations," Mondlane was quoted as saying.
He said the most effective way to fight illegal and unreported fishing would be through unified efforts from African countries along the Indian Ocean to help gain food security for the development of the affected countries.
The fight against illegal fishing has been ongoing, as it also contributes largely towards overfishing. A lot of fish and other marine animals have been placed on the "threatened species list", according to UN Environment.org.
In 2014, WWF Global applauded the ratification of the FAO Port State Measures Agreement (PSMA) by Mozambique, saying that this was a "huge step in the global fight to eliminate illegal fishing".
WWF said at the time that African countries were among the most targeted by Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (“IUU“) fishing, due to insufficient fisheries monitoring and governance in the region.
* Sign up to News24's top Africa news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO THE HELLO AFRICA NEWSLETTER