60. The Consultation developed the following recommendations for adoption:
· All States that have not yet done so should consider becoming party to the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, the 1993 FAO Compliance Agreement and the 1995 UN Fish Stocks Agreement.
· All States should fully implement the FAO Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries and the IPOA-IUU.
· All States should develop national plans of action to prevent, deter and eliminate IUU fishing, as envisioned in the IPOA-IUU.
· All States should adopt legislation that makes it a punishable offence under their law for their nationals (natural and legal persons) to violate the fishery laws and other relevant laws of any other State or to undermine the effectiveness of conservation and management measures adopted by regional fishery management organizations.
· Penalties for fishery violations should be reviewed regularly to ensure that they are of sufficient gravity to deter future violations.
· A record of violations leading to sanctions imposed on a vessel should remain with the vessel, regardless of any change of name, registration, ownership or operator.
· Consideration should be given to creating a record of violations leading to sanctions imposed on owners, operators and masters of fishing vessels engaged in IUU fishing.
· States should closely control the transshipment process, including relevant activities of fishing support vessels.
- States should consider prohibiting transshipment of fish at sea entirely.
- At a minimum, States should require prior authorization for transshipment of fish at sea and should require vessels to report information in paragraph 49 of the IPOA-IUU.
· All States should ensure that their nationals are aware of the adverse effects of IUU fishing on the conservation of fishery resources and should take measures to discourage them from engaging in or doing business with individuals and companies engaged in IUU fishing.
· All States should consider participating in the International Network for the Cooperation and Coordination of Fisheries-Related Monitoring, Control and Surveillance Activities. Closer links should be forged between FAO and the Network as a means of strengthening the Network and making it more efficient.
Flag states, particularly those that operate open registries, should be aware of their responsibilities as flag States under international law and should implement their responsibilities fully. Flag States should control the activities of their vessels. Fishing vessels may be re-registered and they should be de-registered only as a last resort.
· The procedure by which fishing vessels are registered should be transparent.
· Before a State registers a fishing vessel or issues to it a fishing authorization, it should ensure that it has the means to control effectively the activities of the vessel.
· States should require their fishing vessels, including as many small fishing vessels as possible, to be registered.
· Flag States should enquire at both the national and international levels about the history of fishing vessels before determining whether to register them. States should ensure that their national laws provide sufficient authority to deny registration, including provisional registration, to a vessel that appears to have been involved in "flag hopping" or that has a history of IUU fishing unless:
- there has been a real change in ownership and operation of the vessel; or
- having taken into account all relevant facts, the flag State determines that flagging the vessel would not result in IUU fishing;
· States should cooperate with one another in the exchange of information about vessels involved in "flag hopping" or that have a history of IUU fishing.
· Flag States should not register a vessel unless they have a notice of deletion from a previous registry.
· A flag State should maintain a comprehensive record of fishing vessels entitled to fly its flag.
· A flag State should prohibit its vessels from fishing without express authorization.
· A flag State should ensure that each of the vessels entitled to fly its flag fishing in waters outside its sovereignty or jurisdiction holds a valid authorization to fish issued by that flag State and should keep a record of such authorizations issued and should grant such authorization only to vessels properly registered and entered in its record of fishing vessels.
· A flag State should coordinate the functions of registering fishing vessels and granting authorizations to fish among its responsible government agencies.
· Flag States should submit data to FAO on their fishing vessels authorized to fish on the high seas and update those submissions regularly. Flag States should also submit register information to FAO on their vessels fishing/authorized to fish in waters under the national jurisdiction of other States.
· States should ensure that the laws governing vessel registration contain sufficient powers to refuse registration of vessels that appear to be involved in unethical practices, such as "flag hopping".
· Flag States and coastal States should cooperate in carrying out these recommendations.
Monitoring, Control and Surveillance
· A flag State should know the location of its fishing vessels fishing in waters beyond its jurisdiction.
· Tools for tracking vessels include satellite-based vessel monitoring systems (VMS), mandatory position reporting by radio and mandatory maintenance of logbooks with frequent recording of vessel position.
· Flag States should consider developing and strengthening programmes to place observers on board fishing vessels, as appropriate.
· A flag State should require its fishing vessels to submit regular and timely reports on its fishing operations, including catch and effort data.
· If a flag State cannot monitor the fishing activities of its vessels on the high seas, it should consider authorizing other States to board and inspect those vessels on its behalf.
· Flag States should ensure that their vessels fishing on the high seas do not undermine fishery conservation and management measures that apply in any high seas area.
· All States involved in a chartering arrangement should take steps, within the limits of their respective jurisdiction, to ensure that the chartered vessel does not engage in or support IUU fishing.
· Chartering arrangements should be fully transparent. Such arrangements should identify clearly all parties involved and should specify which State is responsible for controlling the fishing activities of the vessel.
· States should not permit vessels with a history of IUU fishing to be used in chartering arrangements, unless:
- there has been a real change in ownership and operation of the vessel; or
- having taken into account all relevant facts, the flag State determines that flagging the vessel would not result in IUU fishing.
61. Recognizing the responsibility of flag States in taking action to combat IUU fishing, the Expert Consultation decided also to include the following recommendations.
· A coastal State should carefully control fisheries access by foreign vessels.
- A coastal State should avoid granting access to vessels with a history of IUU fishing.
- Before a coastal State permits a vessel registered in another State to fish in waters under its jurisdiction, it should verify that the vessel has received or will receive from its flag State a specific authorization to fish in waters beyond the jurisdiction of the flag State.
- A coastal State should maintain a record of vessels not flying its flag authorized to fish in waters under its jurisdiction.
- A coastal State should require foreign vessels granted fisheries access to use VMS so as to have real-time knowledge of vessel positions and regular data reports.
- A coastal State should consider requiring foreign vessels, or a certain percentage of them, to carry observers.
· Coastal States in a given region should consider developing joint or common rules for fisheries access and regional registries and should cooperate in MCS efforts.
· Flag States and port States should cooperate with each other in carrying out these recommendations.
· A port State should require fishing vessels not flying their flag seeking port access to provide at a minimum:
- reasonable advance notice of their entry into port;
- a copy of their authorization to fish issued by the flag State and where appropriate, the relevant coastal State; and
- details of their fishing trip and quantities of fish on board.
· A port State should also require other vessels not flying its flag involved in fishing-related activities, particularly transport vessels, to provide comparable data before entering port.
· Except in cases of force majeure or distress, a State should only grant fishing vessels not flying its flag access to its ports where the State has the capability to conduct vessel inspections. During such inspections, a port State should collect at least the following information, which should be provided to the flag State and, where appropriate, to the relevant coastal State and regional fishery management organizations:
- the flag State of the vessel and identification details;
- name, nationality, and qualifications of the master and the fishing master;
- fishing gear;
- catch on board, including origin, species, form, and quantity;
- where appropriate, other information and documentation required by a regional fishery management organization or international agreement; and
- total landed and transshipped catch.
· If a State has reasonable grounds for suspecting that a vessel voluntarily in its port has engaged in or supported IUU fishing, the port State should:
- not allow the vessel to land or transship fish in its port;
- immediately report the matter to the flag State; and
- if the suspected IUU fishing may have taken place in waters under the jurisdiction of another State or in waters under the purview of a regional fishery management organization, immediately report the matter to that State and/or the regional fishery management organization as well.
· If the suspected IUU fishing may have taken place in waters under the jurisdiction of the port State, that State should exercise its jurisdiction as a coastal State to investigate and, if appropriate, prosecute and penalize those responsible for the IUU fishing.
· If the suspected IUU fishing may have taken place in waters beyond the jurisdiction of the port State, the port State may take action against the vessel and its operators with the consent of, or at the request of, the flag State or, where appropriate, the coastal State.
· Due consideration should be given to the requirements of developing countries, in accordance with Article 5 of the 1995 FAO Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries.
· All States should provide assistance to developing States to promote implementation of the IPOA-IUU and to allow developing States to fulfil other international responsibilities, including as flag States, coastal States and port States.
· Such assistance should include training and capacity building, as well as other financial and technical assistance.
· FAO, international financial institutions, and other relevant international organizations should contribute to the provision of such assistance.