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Expanding catches of sharks and potential negative impacts on shark populations prompted a proposal at the Twenty-second Session of the FAO Committee on Fisheries (COFI) in March 1997 that FAO organize an expert consultation to develop Guidelines leading to a Plan of Action to be submitted at the next Session of the Committee aimed at improved conservation and management of sharks.

The International Plan of Action for Conservation and Management of Sharks (IPOA-SHARKS) was developed through the meeting of a Technical Working Group on the Conservation and Management of Sharks in Tokyo from 23 to 27 April 1998 and the Consultation on Management of Fishing Capacity, Shark Fisheries and Incidental Catch of Seabirds in Longline Fisheries held in Rome from 26 to 30 October 1998 and its preparatory meeting held in Rome from 22 to 24 July 1998.

Header images are licensed under CC BY 2.0, courtesy of Klaus Stiefel, Ryan Espanto and Vic DeLeon

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