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  1. Introduction
  2. Mandate
  3. History
  4. Legal framework
  5. Area of competence
  6. Species and stocks coverage
  7. Membership
  8. Structure
  9. EIMS Publications Database
  10. Media materials
  11. Contact

The Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna (CCSBT) is a regional fisheries management organization formed in 1984 responsible for the management of stocks of the endangered Southern bluefin tuna throughout its distribution. The secretariat is hosted in Canberra, Australia.

Mandate The objective of the Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna (CCSBT) is to ensure, through appropriate management, the conservation and optimum utilization of the global Southern Bluefin Tuna (SBT) fishery. The Commission is responsible for setting a total allowable catch (TAC) and its allocation among the members; decides upon other additional measures to reach the objective; collects and accumulates scientific and legal relevant information; takes decisions to support and implement fishery management; and acts as a coordination mechanism for member's activities in relation to the SBT fishery. History

Southern Bluefin Tuna (SBT) were heavily fished in the past, with the annual catch reaching 80,000 tonnes in the early 1960s. In the mid 1980s it became apparent that the SBT stock was at a level where management and conservation was required. There was a need for a mechanism to limit catches. The main nations fishing SBT at the time, Australia, Japan and New Zealand, began to apply strict quotas to their fishing fleets from 1985 as a management and conservation measure to enable the SBT stocks to rebuild. The Text of the Convention for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna was signed by Australia, Japan and New Zealand in May 1993 and came into force on 20 May 1994. The Convention created the Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna (CCSBT). The CCSBT is headquartered in Canberra, Australia.

Some non-Members were active in the SBT fishery, which reduced the effectiveness of the Members' conservation and management measures. The principal non-Members were Korea, Taiwan and Indonesia. There were also a number of other fishing vessels flying flags of convenience, which operated in the fishery. As a matter of policy, the CCSBT has encouraged the membership of these countries. These countries joined later, as members of the Commission and/or the Extended Commission, as did South Africa and the European Union. The Philippines was a Cooperating Non-Member of the Extended Commission from August 2004 to October 2017.

Legal framework Area of competence

The Convention for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna sets no geographic limits of competence; it extends over all national waters and the high seas, where southern bluefin tuna are found.

CCSBT area of competence
The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on this map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of FAO concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers and boundaries. Dashed lines on maps represent approximate border lines for which there may not yet be full agreement.
Species and stocks coverageSouthern bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii). LanguagesEnglish, French and Spanish Membership

Australia, Indonesia, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, South Africa.

Members of the Extended Commission: Australia, European Union, Fishing Entity of Taiwan (30 August 2002), Indonesia, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, South Africa.

Co-operating Non-Members: Philippines.

Observers:: (i) any State or entity not party to the Convention, whose nationals, residents or fishing vessels harvest southern bluefin tuna, and any coastal State through whose exclusive economic or fishery zone southern bluefin tuna migrates; and (ii) any inter-governmental or, on request, non-governmental organisations having special competence concerning southern bluefin tuna or competent to contribute to the attainment of the objectives of the Convention.


CCSBT is composed of the Commission, which consists of all members, the secretariat represented by the Executive Secretary, the subsidiary bodies that are operative on a permanent basis and the Technical Working Groups.

The subsidiary bodies are the following:

    i. Scientific Committee and Extended Scientific Committee (annual meetings);
    ii. Compliance Committee (annual meetings);
    iii. Ecologically related Species Working Group (typically meets every second year)
    iv. Finance and Administration Committee (annual meetings);
    v. Strategy and Fisheries Management Working Group (meets as required);
The Technical Working Groups are as follows:
    i. Catch per Unit Effort Working Group (informal nature, meets as required);
    ii. Operating Model and Management Procedure Technical Meeting (meets according to the science cycle)
    iii. Compliance Committee Working Group and Technical Compliance Working Group (meets when required).
EIMS Publications Database Media materials Social network Web sources


Robert Kennedy (Executive Secretary)

Postal address: PO Box 37 Deakin West, ACT 2600 - AustraliaStreet address: 81A Denison Street, Deakin, ACT - Australia

Telephone: + (61 2) 6282 8396

Email: Robert Kennedy

Email: [email protected]

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