The inaugural session of the Bay of Bengal Stock Assessment Network (BOB-SAN) was held on 17th August 2023. BOB-SAN is a virtual network of national stock assessment practitioners from South Asia, with BOBP-IGO as the nodal point.
BOB-SAN aims to harness its members' collective wisdom and experiences to improve stock assessment methodologies and contribute to coordinated regional fisheries management.
Representatives from the Governments, and expert nominees from Bangladesh, India, Maldives and Sri Lanka attended the Inaugural Session.
Speaking on the occassion, Dr. P. Krishnan, Director of BOBP-IGO, underscored the significance of regional collaboration in the context of evolving climate and governance dynamics. He emphasized that addressing the intricate challenges of fish stock assessment in the Bay of Bengal demands collaborative efforts and countries need to share their collective insights in the realm of fish stock assessment, particularly concerning shared stocks.
Dr. Rishi Sharma, Senior Fisheries Officer at FAO, highlighted the critical role of communicating stock assessment findings to policymakers, which facilitates more informed and effective management decisions. He further emphasized that the Bay of Bengal's growing importance amplifies the significance of initiatives like BOB-SAN.
Dr. E. Vivekanandan moderated the technical sessions. Country representatives presented a coordinated overview of their respective countries' marine fisheries resources, stock assessment practices used, challenges, and the way forward.
Dr. P. Krishnan, Director of BOBP-IGO thanked the member countries for their support for the BOB-SAN.
The participants agreed to document the insights shared during the inaugural session as compendium of stock assessment practices; institute thematic working groups; meet periodically to discuss advances in assessment approaches; and take every step to connect with BOBSAN for national fisheries management issues.