Countries crack down on illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing
11 June 2014, Rome – Countries took a major step forward in the fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing today as they endorsed a set of international guidelines that will hold states more accountable for the activities of fishing vessels flying their flags. The FAO Voluntary Guidelines for Flag State Performance spell out a range of actions that countries can take to ensure that vessels registered under their flags do not conduct IUU fishing, one of the greatest threats to sustainable fisheries and related livelihoods. While statistics are difficult to gauge, it is believed that IUU fishing has escalated over the past 20 years, especially in the high seas, and is now estimated to amount to 11-26 million tonnes of fish harvested illicitly each year, worth between $10 and $23 billion.
Matthew Camilleri is a fisheries officer with FAO’s Fisheries and Aquaculture department in Rome. In the following interview he explains the impacts of unreported and unregulated fishing and how these guidelines will support fisheries sectors.
Produced by: Sandra Ferrari