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Canada Joins Tropical Tuna Commission

CANADA - Fisheries and Oceans Canada is pleased to announce that Canada has rejoined the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) as a full member. Canada officially rejoined the Commission after its new Convention (known as the Antigua Convention) came into force on August 27, 2010.

Canada also participated in the 2010 annual meeting of the IATTC from September 27 to October 1 in Antigua, Guatemala. This marked the first time that Canada participated as a full member since 1984.

“We must all work together as fishing and coastal nations to preserve the sustainability and the prosperity of Pacific albacore and other tuna fisheries,” said Minister Shea. “That is why we ratified the Antigua Convention last year. We look forward to working with our IATTC partners to strengthen international management measures in the Eastern Pacific.”

The IATTC is the international organisation responsible for the management of highly migratory fish species in the Eastern Pacific, including Pacific albacore tuna, which migrate between international waters and the Exclusive Economic Zones of Canada and the United States each year. It is therefore imperative for Canada to be at the table to more effectively influence the decisions of the organisation and to protect the interests of its coastal communities and the Canadian tuna fishing industry as a whole. Canada officially ratified the Antigua Convention on June 3, 2009.

Of particular importance to Canada is the sustainable management of Pacific albacore tuna stocks and the long-term prosperity of the Pacific albacore tuna fishery, which brings in between $20 and $30 million dollars each year in Canada.

Another issue of importance is the establishment of Port State Measures. Canada considers the implementation of port state measures to be an efficient and cost effective tool to combat IUU fish and fish products from entering the market. The implementation of such measures within the IATTC would contribute to more responsible management of stocks under its mandate.

“I am confident that Canada’s active participation can help the Commission to move towards a more precautionary, science-based approach that will ensure the long-term sustainability and prosperity of our tuna fisheries,” added Minister Shea.

the Fish Site Editor

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