Management of Tuna Fisheries for Sustainable Development in the Pacific Islands

Regional Cooperation in a Shared Fishery as a Means of Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals

in Asia-Pacific Journal of Ocean Law and Policy
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Cooperation by Pacific Island countries in the management of tuna fisheries is an important means of achieving sustainable development of these shared resources, in line with Sustainable Development Goal 14. The Western and Central Pacific Ocean (WCPO) tuna fishery is the largest tuna fishery in the world and two examples of arrangements based on regional cooperation are provided:

  • The purse seine Vessel Day Scheme (VDS) is a fisheries management system that is being implemented through the cooperation of the Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA), which regulates harvesting of tuna in line with SDG 14.4. The scheme also establishes rights in the shared fishery for small island developing states, increasing economic returns in support of SDG 14.7.

  • Regional cooperation in fisheries Monitoring Control and Surveillance is a unique collaboration between the members of the Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) to address illegal, unreported and unregistered (IUU) fishing in support of SDG 14.4. A range of regionally agreed systems and tools is applied.

Management of Tuna Fisheries for Sustainable Development in the Pacific Islands

Regional Cooperation in a Shared Fishery as a Means of Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals

in Asia-Pacific Journal of Ocean Law and Policy

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Figures

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    Total annual catch of tuna in metric tonnes in the WCPO by fishing method.10

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    Map of Western and Central Pacific showing the EEZs of PNA members (dark shading) other FFA members (light shading) and other EEZs (unshaded). The dark line shows the southern and eastern boundaries of the WCPFC area. EEZ boundaries are indicative in some cases and shown without prejudice to any national claims.

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    Fishing effort in PNA waters from 2010 to 2016 in vessel days.

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    Time series of annual purse seine catches in PNA EEZs from 2006–201625 (the large dark part of each bar represents the skipjack catch).

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    Access Fee revenues collected by FFA member countries from 2008 to 2016 from foreign tuna fleets operating in their waters using purse seine, longline and pole and line fishing methods.27

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    Graph showing the number of purse seine vessels registered or chartered by FFA member countries (columns and left axis) and the share of the WCPFC purse seine catch taken by these and other fleets (right axis).

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    Screen shot of the Regional Surveillance Picture – teardrop symbols show vessels reporting through the FFA VMS, hexagonal symbols through the WCPFC VMS and triangles through the AIS system.

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