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Director-General  José Graziano da Silva
A statement by FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva
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Second Meeting of the Parties to the 2009 FAO Agreement
on Port State Measures to Prevent, Deter and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing

 

Santiago, Chile, 3-6 June 2019

It is a great satisfaction to address you at the opening of the Second Meeting of the Parties to FAO Agreement on Port State Measures, the PSMA.

I would like to thank the Government of Chile for hosting this important meeting, as well as the Government of Norway for their generosity in supporting the participation of Developing States in this event.

Today, I see a room filled with many more delegates than two years ago, when we came together at the 1st meeting of the Parties, in Oslo, Norway.

I am proud to say that there are 105 countries that are committed to the implementation of the PSMA, including 87 States, that are Signatories and developing States receiving assistance from FAO in preparation for their adherence to the Agreement.

This is a fantastic achievement, if we consider that the PSMA entered into force just three years ago in 2016.

And one of the main conditions for the PSMA to achieve good results is to have a large number of countries preventing vessels from landing their illegal catches.

Otherwise, if a vessel cannot disembark their catches in one country, it will to do in the neighboring country. 

Today the international commitment to combat IUU fishing is stronger than ever before, and I would like to recognize and congratulate all of you for work in strengthening and giving more visibility to the PSMA.

I want to take this opportunity to recognize also the importance of the support from the very beginning of formers US Secretary of State John Kerry and Chilean Minister of Foreign Affairs, Heraldo Muñoz, for these achievements.

Let me now refer to the 5-year Global Capacity Programme that was elaborated by FAO to support developing countries to implement the P-S-M-A and also complementary instruments.

The Global Capacity Programme is focused on policy, legal and technical assistance. It is designed to be implemented through 10 national and regional projects in collaboration with international partners.

So far, the Global Programme has already received over USD 15 million in financial contributions. I would like to thank Sweden, the European Union, South Korea, the United States, Norway, Iceland and Spain for all their generous support in this regard.

FAO’s assistance has been provided to 38 countries in total, not only through the Global Programme but also from resources coming directly from FAO regular budget through National Technical Cooperation Programmes (TCPs). 

This second meeting of the Parties represents an important milestone in the implementation of the Agreement.

Building on the decisions made at the first meeting, you will focus on a number of key issues that will define how Parties engage, how key elements of the Agreement will be shaped, and especially how implementation will be monitored.

The Rules of Procedure is a key document shaping the foundation for your meetings, providing guidance and structure in your discussions.

The adoption of a Rules of Procedure for the Meetings of Parties will be an important achievement concerning the necessary administrative side of the PSMA, providing clarity on how you work.

Since the 1st Meeting of the Parties in Norway, the focus has been on the ‘how’ of the Agreement; this is a central issue for all stakeholders involved, including, Parties, non-Parties, Regional Fisheries Management Organizations, FAO and other international organizations.

The Technical Working Group on Information Exchange has met twice in the last 2 years, to discuss and negotiate the central issue of how information will be exchanged with regards to The Agreement.

The efforts of this working group over the last 2 years should be commended, as those involved have undertaken the task of considering the options for how the information concerning the PSMA will be exchanged, a matter essential to the functioning of the PSMA itself, as well as its success!

This is a matter that I know is of great importance to you all present today, and I am sure that you will provide the guidance needed to move forward on this key issue.

The next time the Parties in 2020, 4 years after entering into force, will meet to review the implementation of the PSMA. In this regard, another key matter to be discussed during this meeting is how this monitoring and review will take shape.

This is a crucial moment. We have in our hands the opportunity to put forward a comprehensive framework for action to combat IUU fishing.

A framework that is anchored in the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, and also includes the Voluntary Guidelines on Catch Documentation Schemes and the Global Record of Fishing Vessels.

We have all the instruments necessary to achieve our goal to combat IUU fishing .

I would like to commend the efforts and commitments of FAO Member Countries, UN agencies and other international organizations, regional fishery bodies and NGOs.

Our work together has allowed us to reach this point.

I am confident that through your continued determination to effectively implement the provisions of the P-S-M-A, we will move ahead with determination to prevent, deter and eliminate IUU fishing.

 

 

 

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