The FAO [FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS ] Fisheries and Aquaculture Department has built up statistical databases since its inception, is the only organization with a worldwide remit to engage in the systematic data collection and compilation on fisheries and aquaculture information. The data is provided by FAO Members and verified from other sources wherever possible. The reliability of the analysis based on the data, and the quality of the advice to which it gives rise, depends on the reliability and quality of the data itself. To this end the FAO seeks to continue supporting and strengthening national capacity in the collecting, analysis and use of accurate, reliable and timely data. In this respect the FAO has a unique role in supporting the management and development of the aquaculture and fishery sectors.
The FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department recognizes the importance of internationally agreed methods and tools for data compilation. Thus, for the last five decades, it has cooperated in international efforts directed towards the development of standard concepts, definitions, classifications and methodologies for the collection and collation of fishery statistics, most notably through the Coordinating Working Party on Fisheries Statistics.