USAID Oceans Advances Regional Readiness for Traceability System Design, Development with Catch Documentation Assessments

Community members from Kelantan, Malaysia meet with USAID Oceans to discuss community-based fishing organizations during the Malaysia CDT Gap Analysis research process. Photo: USAID Oceans/

Since its launch in 2015, USAID Oceans has worked to engage ASEAN and Coral Triangle Member Countries to advance their capacity to accomplish end-to-end seafood traceability. As seafood supply chains have become longer and more complex to account for declining near-shore seafood returns and as demands have increased from international markets for traceable seafood, USAID Oceans has witnessed firsthand the region’s growing demand for electronic seafood traceability tools. To support its regional partners in their journey to transparent, full-chain traceability, USAID Oceans has worked closely with the governments of Malaysia, Vietnam, and Thailand to assess their current catch documentation practices, identify their strengths and weaknesses, and provide recommendations and guidance to leverage existing strengths toward the implementation of an electronic traceability system. USAID Oceans also delivered partnership recommendations to the governments for potential partnerships that will bolster the system’s capabilities, effectiveness, and sustainability.

Over 2017 and 2018, USAID Oceans partnered with Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam’s respective Department of Fisheries to assess their current catch documentation and traceability capabilities and to develop a road maps for implementing an electronic catch documentation and traceability (eCDT) system that will support the countries’ compliance with U.S. and EU market requirements in the near-term and other importing country requirements in the long-term.

The shift towards a fully compliant, interoperable, and advanced eCDT system requires supply-chain wide transformation that takes the best of the current system and migrates key data into an efficient, secure, and transparent data management platform. Since 2015, USAID Oceans has worked to develop recommendations and standards for eCDT systems that are fully transparent, sustainable, and comply with national and international market requirements (USAID Oceans’ Fisheries Catch Documentation and Traceability in Southeast Asia: A Conceptual Overview ‘CDT 101’, Fisheries Catch Documentation and Traceability in Southeast Asia: Technical Concept and Specifications ‘CDT 201’, and Data Requirements for Catch Documentation and Traceability in Southeast Asia). Assessment recommendations draw heavily from the program’s knowledge base in traceability and design standards, as well as from lessons learned from USAID Oceans’ eCDT learning site implementations in the Philippines and Indonesia.

The assessment methodology can be used by other regional governments as a guide to perform a custom CDT Gap Analysis and begin to develop a roadmap for full-scale, robust electronic traceability. USAID Oceans is continuing to support the governments as they progress with their individual eCDT plans, as well as continues to offer technical guidance and support to its other ASEAN and Coral Triangle partners.

The Malaysia and Vietnam CDT Gap Analysis Reports can now be downloaded, with the Thailand report forthcoming.

Malaysia CDT Gap Analysis and Partnership Appraisal – Download

Vietnam CDT Gap Analysis and Partnership Appraisal – Download

Type: Feature Article, Project Update | Author: The Oceans and Fisheries Partnership | Date: 19 December, 2018 | Subject: Capacity Development, Catch Documentation and Traceability, Partnerships and Engagement, Regional Coordination | Country: Malaysia, Regional, Thailand, Vietnam