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The twenty-eighth session of the General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM) was attended by delegates from 13 of the 24 members of the Commission. The Commission reviewed the intersessional activities, particularly the conclusions and recommendations of the sixth session of the Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC). The Commission urged members to ensure the participation of scientists in SAC activities and emphasized the need for devising integrated management advice based on multispecies stock assessments and on the socio-economic status of concerned fisheries. It acknowledged the importance for SAC of the FAO regional projects and recommended their continuation and geographic extension. The Commission noted the ratification by 13 members of the amendments to the GFCM Agreement relative to the autonomous budget and agreed to hold an extraordinary session as soon as possible after the deposit of the sixteenth instrument of acceptance of the amendments. The Commission favoured a step-by-step approach for implementing the international plan of action to combat, deter and eliminate illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IPOA-IUU) in the Mediterranean. The Commission renewed its commitment to implement Recommendation GFCM/2002/1 on the management of selected demersal and small pelagic species and adopted the programme of work of its subsidiary bodies for 2004. It also renewed the mandate of its Bureau.

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