Call for the ICCAT to support stronger transparency and anti-IUU measures

Date: November 10, 2023

Members of the EU IUU Fishing Coalition, Oceana, The Pew Charitable Trusts and WWF are working together to ensure that the EU’s engagement with Regional Fisheries Management Organisations (RFMOs) and key partners leads to strong transparency and measures against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing worldwide.

In a coalition report titled “Achieving transparency and combating IUU fishing in RFMOs”, we outline the minimum transparency and anti-IUU fishing measures that we consider essential for RFMO and fishing entities to adopt and implement in order to end IUU fishing.

During the 2022 ICCAT annual meeting, several commendable recommendations were adopted. In particular, we applaud the adoption of Recommendation 22-14 to promote compliance by nationals. This expands CPCs duty to investigate IUU allegations and take appropriate action to any natural or legal person responsible for, benefiting from or supporting these activities.

In recent months, important discussions on topics such as catch documentation schemes, labour standards, electronic monitoring systems, labour conditions and climate change have been taking place in working groups. We urge all ICCAT CPCs to continue to actively participate in these discussions towards their prompt conclusions.

To promote transparency and tackle IUU fishing, we ask ICCAT CPCs to prioritise the following actions:

  1. Expand the coverage of electronic Catch Documentation Schemes (eCDS) to cover all ICCAT stocks/species
  2. Adopt minimum standards for an ICCAT Electronic Monitoring programme
  3. Agree on a High Seas Boarding Inspections Scheme
  4. Endorse core principles and continue work on labour standards
  5. Revise Recommendation 18-09 on port State measures to prevent, deter and eliminate IUU fishing
  6. Further expand IMO number reporting requirements to include all eligible vessels

Read the full position statement here.

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