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The freshwater fisheries in Myanmar are economically significant and important to livelihoods and food security. Yet significant threats to the resource base and public demand call for the development of management initiatives, legal adjustments and a people-centered approach. This brief identifies a series of options and priorities that could help improving freshwater fisheries management towards a more sustainable and equitable exploitation of inland fish resources.

Myanmar’s inshore fisheries support the livelihoods of millions of Myanmar citizens living in coastal areas. However, in recent years, the capacity of these fisheries to support viable livelihoods and contribute significantly to local economies has come under threat. This policy brief sets out five priority areas that need immediate attention if coastal resources are to recover to more productive levels and if fisher communities are to continue to benefit from these resources.

Myanmar’s offshore fish stocks have been depleted by up to 80% since 1979, exposing Myanmar’s people to significant economic, food security, nutrition and environmental risks. This ecosystem decline has been driven by out-dated and weak laws and policies and by inadequate management and institutional capacity. Investment in protecting and restoring fish stocks, ecosystems and habitats is required.

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