In February 2000, some 540 participants from 66 countries and more than 200 governmental and non-governmental organisations participated in the “Conference on Aquaculture in the Third Millennium” in Bangkok, Thailand. This conference was organised by the Network of Aquaculture Centres in Asia-Pacific (NACA) and the FAO and hosted by the Government of Thailand.

Throughout 1999, NACA and the FAO facilitated the preparation of reviews on aquaculture developments in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America, the countries of the former USSR, the Near East, and the Pacific Island nations and held expert meetings to consider major trends in aquaculture development. Fourteen Thematic Reviews on selected aspects of aquaculture were promoted and eight overviews on key issues were prepared for presentation and discussion at the Conference. All participants to the Conference received extended summaries of all material prepared. Twenty plenary presentations and discussions, and 12 workshop sessions facilitated by expert panels enabled participants to discuss and prioritise major issues and strategic actions for follow-up.

Major themes discussed included policy-making and planning for sustainable aquaculture development (covering food security and poverty alleviation, rural development, stakeholder involvement, incentives, and legal and institutional frameworks); technological and R&D priorities (including systems/species, genetics, health management, nutrition/feeding, and culture-based fisheries); human resource development; international trade; product quality, safety and marketing; regional/inter-regional co-operation; financing; and institutional support.

Against this background, the Conference participants discussed priorities and strategies for the development of aquaculture for the next two decades, in the light of the future economic, social and environmental issues and advances in aquaculture technologies. Based on these deliberations, the participants adopted the Bangkok Declaration and Strategy for Aquaculture Development Beyond 2000. 

The Conference encouraged States, the private sector and other concerned stakeholders to incorporate in their strategies for aquaculture development the key strategy elements identified during this Conference. The proceedings of the conference have been published separately.

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