Towards a Theoretical Framework for the Assessment of the Marine Living Resources (MLR) Legislative Framework of South Africa: Implications for Effectively Regulating Harvesting of MLR Such as Wild Abalone (Haliotis midae)

This is a short review of the current fisheries legislative mechanisms in South Africa. The thesis discusses the various marine legislative mechanisms and determines how these laws relate to the efficient management of South African fisheries. The main focus is on marine species that are endangered, especially abalone. South Africa’s Marine Living Resources Act (MLRA) was adopted in 1998 with the primary objective of protecting marine fishing nations, including endangered species. The country has since developed policies and actions intended to improve the MLRA. These policies include South Africa’s Small Scale Fisheries Sector (SSFP) regulation, which was implemented in 2012. In May 2014, the Marine Living Resources Amendment Act, Act No. 5 of 2014, was passed to improve the MLRA and allow for the SSFP to be enforced. The introduction of the MLRA and its supporting policies is driven by the need to achieve protection of marine resources, promote economic development in the marine industry and protect endangered marine life by implementing anti-poaching legislation and minimising marine pollution. South Africa has faced a range of obstacles in achieving this goal and most of the programmes have not been implemented successfully so far. While regulations were placed in place to support such an initiative, a community of fishermen (subsistence and artisanal fishermen) remained neglected and ignored in the fishing rights allocation process. However, there is hope for small-scale fisheries, provided that the government is preparing to follow a co-management strategy centred on the community, which will see fishing rights allocated to small-scale fishing communities and co-manage fisheries with the government.

Author (s) Details

Dr. Cliff Sibusiso Dlamini
Center for Coordination of Agricultural Research and Development for Southern Africa (CCARDESA), Plot 4701, Station Exit Road Private Bag 00357, Gaborone, Botswana.

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