NGO Tuna Forum calls on ICCAT to adopt management measures and robust harvest control rules for blue sharks and allocate the South Atlantic blue shark TAC among parties.

Date: March 22, 2023


2023 Focus Ask – Tropical Tuna Measure

Adopt further improvements to, and extend, the tropical tuna measure adopted in 2022. Specifically, in 2023, ensure that the bigeye and yellowfin catches are maintained at sustainable levels by fully allocating the TACs for bigeye and yellowfin, and adopting procedures to identify and address non-compliance with TAC allocations.

Accelerate the development of management strategy evaluation (MSE) for all tropical tuna stocks and adopt a management procedure for western Atlantic skipjack.

Also in 2023:

  • Adopt electronic monitoring program standards and a timeline for implementation by 2025.
  • Adopt North and South Atlantic management measures and robust harvest control rules in line with advice from the 2023 blue shark stock assessment and allocate the South Atlantic blue shark TAC among CPCs.

Cross-Cutting RFMO Asks

  • Require 100% observer coverage (human and/or electronic) in industrial tuna fisheries, including all those vessels engaged in at sea transshipment, by 2024.
  • Adopt and/or strengthen at-sea transshipment measures in line with best practices, such as those recommended in the NGO Tuna Forum’s Aligned Guidance on At-Sea Transshipment.
  • Strengthen FAD management provisions in line with the NGO Tuna Forum’s Aligned Guidance on FAD Management.
  • Strengthen compliance mechanisms to ensure processes are transparent and robust so that members are held accountable for the implementation of all conservation management measures and data reporting requirements and there are clear consequences for non-compliance.
  • Implement precautionary, science-based regulations, best practices and guidelines for avoidance, handling, release and, where appropriate, science-based catch or retention limits, for all tuna fishing fleets to proactively minimize their impacts upon all non-target and non-retained bycatch species.
  • Require fins naturally attached for ALL (i.e., fresh and frozen) sharks without exceptions, adopting the globally acknowledged best practice to prevent finning.
  • Establish recommendations for labor and safety standards for crew and observers on fishing vessels based on relevant international labor conventions.
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