SPRFMO Consolidates Commitment to Fisheries Sustainability in the South Pacific

2 February 2016, at 12:00am

GLOBAL - At its annual meeting, held from 25-29 January in Valdivia, Chile, the South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organisation (SPRFMO) adopted a series of important conservation and enforcement measures demonstrating its commitment to sustainable fisheries in the region.

The agreed conservation measure for jack mackerel, the main commercial stock managed by the organisation, authorises a total allowable catch for 2016 of 460,000 tonnes in line with the recommended limit of the Scientific Committee. The EU's share of 28,100 tonnes was also confirmed.

Several conservation measures were adopted to regulate deep sea fishing and new exploratory fisheries in the region.

The SPRFMO also strengthened its monitoring and compliance functions. For the first time, it carried out a compliance review of its members against their obligations. A Russian flagged vessel was added to the Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing vessel list, which also contains another Russian and a Peruvian flagged vessel.

A new measure was adopted establishing that vessels without nationality fishing in SPRFMO waters are engaged in IUU fishing and paving the way for consequent sanctions.

The selection process for providing SPRFMO with a Vessel Monitor System has been launched, which will greatly improve SPRFMO capacity to monitor vessels operating in the area. A VMS service provider will be selected at the next annual meeting.

The next annual meeting will take place in Australia in January 2017.