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Ground-breaking illegal fishing accord soon to enter into force

Staff writer ▼ | May 18, 2016
Illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing is about to become much more difficult thanks to the imminent entry into force of the Port State Measures Agreement (PSMA), a ground-breaking international accord championed by FAO.
Illegal fishing
Fish   The Port State Measures Agreement
Now that the required threshold has been reached, with 30 Members having formally deposited their instruments of adherence, the count down to the entry into force of the PSMA is underway and on 5 June 2016 the world's first ever binding international accord specifically targeting IUU fishing will become international law.

Collectively, the 29 countries and the European Union, which signed as a single party, have formally committed themselves through their instruments of adhesion to the Agreement account for more than 62 percent of worldwide fish imports and 49 percent of fish exports, which were $133 billion and $139 billion respectively, in 2013.

Each year, IUU fishing is responsible for annual catches of up to 26 million tonnes, with a value of up to USD 23 billion. It also undermines efforts to ensure sustainable fisheries and responsible fish stock management around the world.

"This is the dawn of a new era in the effort to combat illegal fishing. By denying unscrupulous fishers safe haven and access to markets, the PSMA will drive the seafood industry toward greater sustainability and have significant ripple effects throughout the entire fisheries supply chain," said FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva.