Straddling Fish Stocks Agreement Parties

Improvements in data collection will not improve the health of stocks without a better response to the precautionary approach. Debates on the correct definition of shark catches, whether targeted or incidental, should not prevent effective management by the parties to the PMOs. Conservation measures that apply the ecosystem approach must be implemented without delay. Where data are not available, all shark catches should be prohibited until appropriate management measures can be taken to ensure the sustainability of catches for these threatened species. Sharks are among the most endangered species of tuna fishing. That is why the review conference, which resumed in 2010, recommended that states “strengthen, individually and through THE PROs, shark conservation and management.” 47 Measures that could contribute to achieving this objective include specific requirements for collecting data on shark species and developing conservation and management measures for sharks, whether caught in targeted fisheries or as bycathug. Therefore, shark protection is not only an important task for PMOs, but also serves as an alternate in deciding whether commitments to implement the ecosystem approach are being met. The provisions of the agreement are not limited to good practice: these are legal obligations. Governments that have approved it must comply with their obligations as members of regional fisheries management organizations (PROs), international bodies empowered to manage fisheries resources. UNFSA`s principles and commitments have contributed significantly to the development of the legal framework and specific management measures for PMOs and other international legal instruments (2), such as the UN agreement on port state measures adopted in 2009 by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (PSMA). Article 18, point (d), requires flag states to impose “the identification of vessels and fishing gear for identification according to uniform and internationally recognized fishing and fishing systems.” Each authority responsible for managing tuna species has stocks below the size needed to achieve maximum yield. This mandate examines progress in implementing the Fish Stocks Agreement, based on a review of the status of some large migratory stocks and the effectiveness of the actions taken by PMOs in carrying out specific mandates.

It also examines whether the recommendations made in previous reviews have been implemented. This is neither a quantitative analysis nor a comprehensive review of the implementation of all the provisions. Rather, it is a qualitative assessment of the performance of ORP Member States with regard to specific conservation objectives that charitable Trusts consider to be priorities. Since there is only an indicative overview, it examines the functioning of PMOs, which focus on the management of tuna and tuna species6. These facilities are responsible for the management of major pelagic fisheries in 90 per cent of the ocean. In addition, tuna fishing is a pillar of food security and economic stability. For these reasons, tuna PMOs are an important model for reviewing the success of the agreement as a political instrument to achieve the sustainability of global fisheries.