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The Importance of regional cooperation between Pacific Island Countries for fisheries management and to increase the benefits for Pacific Islanders

Apr 27, 2020 5:18:12 PM / by James Sloan

In accordance with the United Nations Law of the Sea Convention (UNCLOS) Pacific Island Countries (PICs) have the use and management rights to the resources within and under huge areas of Pacific ocean. These rights include the exclusive sovereign rights to use and manage all of the resources in these ocean spaces and on and under the seabed. However, there remains disagreement between some PICs over where the maritime boundaries should be drawn as well as a lack of a unified position in relation to how the resources should be exploited.

As the world goes through unprecedented change due to the Covid-19 pandemic, renewed cooperation among PICs is more important than ever to secure better governance, more effective fisheries management and more benefits from the resources flowing back to Pacific Islanders.

Dr Transform Aqorau has recently published an insightful article that explains some of the resilience more Pacific based tuna operations are experiencing in the face of Covid-19. This is available here.

In this legal bulletin we set out an explanation of the law and governance context that we hope explains why and how more regional cooperation to implement a shared plan with more transparency at regional and national levels will benefit Pacific Islanders.

The regulatory regime for Fishing in the Western and Central Pacific - the current benefits and problems

In terms of fishing, the regulatory regime is advanced and is embedded at national and regional levels. While UNCLOS provides the exclusive rights to PICs to conserve, manage, explore and exploit fisheries resources, because PICs do not have the capacity (yet) to capture all of the fish within its EEZs they are required by UNCLOS to allow other nations in to fish (Art 62(2) of UNCLOS).

Article 62(2) of UNCLOS is worth noting in full:

Utilization of living resources

1. The coastal State shall promote the objective of optimum utilization of the living resources in the exclusive economic zone without prejudice to article 61.

2. The coastal state shall determine its capacity to harvest the living resources of the exclusive economic zone. Where the coastal state does not have the capacity to harvest the entire allowable catch, it shall, through agreements or other arrangements and pursuant to the terms, conditions, laws and regulations referred to in paragraph 4, give other States access to the surplus of the allowable catch, having particular regard to the provisions of articles 69 and 70, especially in relation to the developing States mentioned therein.

The effect of Article 62(2) of UNCLOS is that if a PIC cannot catch all its Total Allowable Catch (TAC), then it is obliged to allocate the surplus to other States. In the case of Australia it has the capacity to capture all of its TAC and therefore does not have to allow vessels from other States access to its fish stocks within its EEZ. In New Zealand’s case its fishing grounds are geographically remote and require specialised vessels and equipment. Further, it is a requirement of New Zealand law that any vessel seeking a fishing licence to fish in New Zealand’s EEZ must re-flag its vessel to New Zealand and therefore submit to the jurisdiction of New Zealand for all regulatory purposes.

It is important to note that in accordance with UNCLOS each coastal State has the right to set its own TAC, but they are also bound by Art 62(1) that obliges them to promote the optimum utilization of living resources.

The management regime

The Western and Central Pacific Ocean Commission (WCPFC) was established by the WCPF Convention (in force on 19 June 2004[1]). The WCPFC sets the limits for the amount of fish that may be caught in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean that covers all the PICs’ ocean space.

This is the WCPFC area:


WCPFC, as the Regional Fisheries Management Organisation[2], is supposed to ensure the Western Pacific’s tuna species are captured at sustainable levels. To do this WCPFC operates within the internationally agreed framework including the United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement (UNFSA)[3] and is assisted by the CROP agency - The Pacific Commission (SPC) in terms of collection of data and technical advice.

PICs are also provided with assistance from the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency[4] (FFA) which, although not a RFMO, was established to:

“strengthen national capacity and regional solidarity so its 17 members can manage, control and develop their tuna fisheries now and in the future.”[5]

FFA seeks to maximise the social and economic benefits of offshore fisheries resources to PICs[6].

This is the FFA member area:



Problem 1 - are PICs getting sufficient benefit from their resources?

Despite the established regulatory framework that includes access to excellent technical assistance questions persist regarding whether PICs benefit fairly and sufficiently from their tuna Stocks. These queries exist because the latest (2019) data shows that the WCPO is home to the healthiest global tuna stocks which represent between 55-60% of global tuna catch.[7] However, estimates by economists suggest that despite this "wealth of resources" PICs actually receive just 6% of the financial benefits of their fisheries resources.

While many advocates for the current system are right to point out that the fishing resources, and particularly the licensing of the right to fish, provides significant contributions to PICs’ economies they will also accept that in reality more than 80% of the economic value flows out of the PICs. Those benefits flow to the top 7 tuna fishing nations led by Indonesia, Japan and Taiwan.[8]

Of course the economic value alone does not take into account the other potential economic benefits or opportunities that tuna and healthy fish stocks could and do bring to PICs. Other benefits include ecosystem benefits, game fishing and tourism.

There are also bright spots within the current regulatory framework and this includes the 8 PICs (and Tokelau as a plus one) that are the Parties to the Nauru Agreement[9] that have adopted an agreed management measure of auctioning vessel days to their EEZs to the highest bidder. This management measure is known as the Vessel Day Scheme (VDS).

Problem 2 - there are not enough worthwhile employment opportunities for Pacific Islanders

Another difficult problem is that labour conditions on fishing vessels are characterised by low wages, dangerous work environments, and extended periods out at sea that fail provide worthwhile working conditions, particularly in the Pacific context for Pacific Islanders. This context includes long periods out at sea involve missing family or cultural events[10]. It also means that if worthwhile employment is not offered for Pacific Islanders they are missing out on potential employment opportunities associated with the exploitation of their resources.

The driver of the problem of poor labour conditions is, at present, largely outside the control of PICs. This is because current market forces demand cheap tuna available in abundance. These international demands drive poor labour conditions are endemic in the global fishing industry[11].

However, the problem of poor labour conditions adversely impacts PICs because the current use of foreign labour, combined with poor labour standards and human rights abuses[12], result in a range of adverse consequences for PICs when the fishing vessel docks at a PIC port[13]. These adverse consequences stretch limited resources further, are common across the Pacific but are most likely to impact Fiji and the Marshall Islands as Suva and Majuro are among the top 5 ports most utilised by Distant Water Fishing fleets to offload fish or resupply their vessels[14].

There is also a link between the decline of fish stocks and forced labour. This is because a failure to respect basic legal and governance norms in one area of the activity (labour standards) is also likely to involve failing to respect legal and governance norms related to fisheries management standards[15].

Poor working conditions, lack of opportunities, and associated problems are not something that PICs have an instant solution to because they are not due to a failure of PICs’ legal and regulatory systems. There is a lack of opportunity because the drivers of the problem are outside the control of PICs. As Havice and Campling explain:

“the internal governance failings of Pacific island countries are far from sufficient targets to explain, much less correct, environmentally harmful and economically uneven trends.”[16]

Advantages that PICs have though (other than control over the areas of ocean that are home to most of the fisheries resources) is a general consistency relating to legal systems that are predominantly based on common law [17] meaning that their Constitutional arrangements are broadly based on the Parliamentary sovereignty and the separation of powers [18], most PICs have admiralty jurisdiction [19] although it may be infrequently relied upon and some have modern employment law [20] although they may not have signed up to many international labour conventions [21].

A review of PICs national legislation to regulate fishing also demonstrates it is more advanced and comprehensive (with a few exceptions [see 20]) than PICs national legislation to regulate employment. This suggests that PICs, ably aided by FFA and agencies like SPC, have put in place legislation that does intend to regulate the “outside” fishing entity in accordance with international law and PICs’ sovereign rights in their EEZs.

However, due to a lack of resources PICs are not well placed to regulate the broad range of issues that are reported to arise on fishing vessels in relation to working conditions even before the complex jurisdictional issues relating to flag State immunity are taken into account.

But there have also been positive developments, and these include but are not limited to:

  • 5 FFA members recently signing the Torremolinos Declaration and signalling their intent to take action to enable the Cape Town Agreement to enter into force by 2022. This means they will join the Cook Islands who acceded to the Cape Town Agreement in 2019 and will implement better safety standards for fishing vessels that can be enforced by Port State control.
  • FFA has in consultation with regional leaders taken the decision to update the minimum terms and conditions of the fishing licences that will be issued by PICs, known as the Harmonised Minimum Terms and Conditions (HTMCs) to incorporate minimum employment standards in a fisheries licence. This does not, in the case of foreign flagged vessels, have the consequence of extending the PIC jurisdiction beyond the limits settled and agreed by UNCLOS but it does enable the PIC to exercise the administrative consequence of suspending or revoking the fishing licence for a breach of the HTMC relating to employment.

Despite these advantages and positive developments, the challenge remains that PICs must have sufficient resources and ability to implement their national fisheries laws consistently across their EEZs. As the HTMCs demonstrate it is important that the same standards are applied by PICs across all PICs’ EEZs.

This requires consistency and cooperation in terms of implementation measures.


To obtain the full benefit from the fisheries resources, PICs will have to create their own operational capacity to capture all of their shared resources. While this is a legitimate goal it represents a significant challenge[22]. It is also a goal that does not on its own answer other issues like the cost of processing and the demand for tuna at a price set by the global marketplace.

There are many regional organisations and Pacific people working in regional agencies that are finding ways to work within the current system to get the best from it for PICs. The already mentioned Parties to the Nauru Agreement (8 PICs plus Tokelau) have demonstrated that by cooperating and adopting the same management system (VDS) they have been able to increase revenues for licensing the activity of fishing in their EEZs.

At the same time, those PICs with longline fisheries predominantly for albacore tuna such as Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, Cook Islands are working on the implementation of the Tokelau arrangement. However, development remains in early stages without agreement on the target reference point for the albacore species[23].

In terms of management of the resources, WCPFC points to more success for the region than other regions. For example, WCPFC’s Executive Director Mr Feleti Teo recently explained [24]:

“Our region has had all of its key commercial tuna stocks of bigeye, skipjack, south Pacific albacore and yellowfin tuna assessed to have been managed and maintained above agreed sustainable levels. This accomplishment is not matched by any other regional ocean in the world.”

There are also cases of successful recruitment and retention of Pacific Islanders on fishing vessels operating in the WCPO. For example, in Fiji, the domestic industry claims Fijian representation of just over half of the number of fishing vessel crew on these locally based vessels. In the Solomon Islands the National Fisheries Developments (NFD) operates a fleet of purse seine and pole and line vessels from the port of Noro with only a very small number of crew recruited from outside of the Solomon Islands.

But the question remains: what more can PICs do to increase their participation and share of revenues from their shared tuna resources?

WCPFC exists to promote consensus between PICs and distant water fishing nations to make fair fishing rules, and it also recognises that sustainable fishing is important to the region, for jobs, the economies and as part of the Pacific region’s culture and heritage [25] - but will sustainable fishing alone bring more revenue to PICs?

To really achieve a fair share of revenues, the challenge remains that it should be PIC fishing companies undertaking more of the fishing operation and continuing to support the exclusive sovereign rights of PICs to conserve, manage and exploit the renewable fisheries resources within their EEZs and resist any approach where flag States regulate fisheries. PNA’s vision is to expand PICs’ participation in the fishery.[26]

To understand the problem before trying to fix it and therefore avoid unintended consequences is always advisable[27]. But with something as complex, interrelated and as large as the Pacific ocean it will take many people working together to address all of the pressing issues identified by WCPFC including:

“unregulated fishing, over-capitalization, excessive fleet capacity, vessel reflagging to escape controls, insufficiently selective gear, unreliable databases and insufficient multilateral cooperation in respect to conservation and management of highly migratory fish stocks.”

Way forward - A system to fix the system?

The challenges that PICs continue to face mean that solutions will only be found by Pacific Island governments working together to think through and carefully plan a new vision for fisheries management. To create this vision there has to be engagement from all Pacific Island governments and stakeholders to design and implement a system that gets the best for Pacific Islanders.

This requires more understanding of Pacific Islanders rights in the ocean and its resources, the state of the resources and why the ocean, its resources and its health are essential for the future of PICs.

A potential start is to encourage more transparency from PIC governments in relation to fisheries data, and finding better and more inclusive decision-making processes to take into account all interests, including traditional rights, in the ocean. This should aim towards a more unified and regional approach to both fishing and other existing ocean uses and proposed ocean uses including mining. If those proposed uses will damage or has the potential to damage PIC fisheries then decision-makers at a national level must take that into account.

Dr Transform's article supports this and suggests technology will also play a key factor:

"Making greater use of remote and transparent data collection is clearly one way forward. Another longer-term strategy would be to boost the use of local crews and processing. Finally, there must be increased cooperation between the tuna industry and Pacific island countries to ensure the high standards of sustainability and social accountability in the WCPO are not sacrificed."

The new approach should recognise the difficulties of implementing laws without cooperation from all agencies, and seek an integrated approach to ocean use that sets a regional and national approach for how PICs want to see the benefits from their resources improve. This is frequently cited as the development of a blue economy. PICs must then ensure its development partners fit within its vision and plan for its blue economy.

Time will tell whether existential threats like climate change or the Covid-19 pandemic will hasten the urgency for Pacific Island governments to work together to implement the shared aim and vision. Pacific Islanders and their cultures have proved themselves to be resilient, but as Dr Transform Aqorau's explains it is fishing companies that are not reliant on foreign flagged vessels and crews who are doing the best, the full quote from Dr Transform is worth repeating:

"In contrast, those who are not reliant on foreign flagged vessels and crews have had the least disruptions to their operations. For example, two Solomon Islands-based fishing companies, Soltuna, a fish processing company, and National Fisheries Development (NFD) Ltd, a fish-catching company, who are both vertically integrated with the Bolton brands and have their own Solomon Islands flagged vessels and crews, do not have the challenges experienced by other processing plants that are not vertically integrated and that rely on foreign flag vessels. They supply both the local and international markets exporting canned tuna to Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu and Fiji, frozen tuna to Japan, and loins to Italy. As the General Manager of NFD Ltd told me: “What this crisis is revealing is that locals can lead and implement most shore and some vessel operations, with guidance from experts offshore.”"




[1] "WCPFC." Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

[2] UNCLOS led to the creation of RFMOs because it was recognised early on that some fish species are highly migratory and to manage them efficiently and sustainably a regional approach should be taken.

[3] "Overview - Convention & Related Agreements." Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

[4] "Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency." Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

[5] FFA members are: Australia, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.

[6] The Vision Statement of the FFA is: “Our people will enjoy the highest levels of social and economic benefits through the sustainable use of our offshore fisheries resources.”

[7] SPC data showed in 2018 that 2.791m tonnes of tuna was captured in the WCPFC area which was in turn slightly below the all time high of 2.885m tonnes in 2014. This means that the WCPFC made up 81% of the Pacific Ocean catch of 3.443m tonnes and 54% of the global catch of 5.173m tonnes in 2018 "Healthy tuna stocks in the Pacific pave the way for strategic ...." 10 Dec. 2019, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

[8] It has been estimated in 2014 ("Netting Billions: A Valuation of Tuna in the Western and ...." 23 Sep. 2016, the landed economic value of the main species of tuna for the Western and Central Pacific is US$5bn (US$10bn-12bn globally) and the economic value is US$22.5bn (US$42bn globally) at the point of sale, most of this economic value leaves the region and does not flow to PICs. The exact value that flows to PICs is hard to estimate but has been estimated by Dunn, Rodwell and Joseph that PICs receive a maximum of 6 percent of the value of the fish caught within their EEZs - This is cited in "Shifting Tides in the Western and Central Pacific ... - CiteSeerX." 21 Feb. 2016, Another estimate provides "Impacts of 2018 Tuna Commission measures on Pacific island ...." (4 Feb. 2018, “In 2015, fisheries contributed: US$453million to the region’s GDP; generated US$571million benefit to the balance of payments in the form of net exports; paid US$46million to 23,000 national employees; contributed US$54million to government revenue in the form of license revenue and other payments; and spent US$120million on the purchase of locally produced goods and services. As individual countries, Tokelau’s fisheries contributed more than 60 per cent of total government revenues in 2016. In Kiribati and Tuvalu it is even higher at 80 and 90 per cent.”

[9] A grouping of 8 PICs have signed the Nauru Agreement and are Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) and they have adopted a common fisheries management method known as the Vessel Day Scheme (VDS) ("The PNA Vessel Day Scheme |" Accessed 26 Feb. 2020. VDS controls access to the EEZ’s of its 8 member PICs by allocating a limited number of fishing days to member States (Approximately 45,000 fishing days were allocated in total in 2018), which are then sold to the highest bidder. Each member country is allocated a number of days that PNA describes as the Total Allowable Effort (TAE) and the VDS days purchased by bidders can be traded to other countries. Following the adoption of VDS there have been increased returns to member States with returns increasing from $US60 million in 2010 to $US500 million in 2017. Outside the PNA the other 6 PICs (Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, Vanuatu, Cook Islands, Niue) manage their fisheries within the international and regional framework via national fisheries legislation utilising the main management efforts of vessel licensing, licensing conditions and access fees (Within PNA it is purse seine fishing that is significant but more important to countries with albacore tuna, like Solomon Islands, Cook Islands, Fiji, Tonga, Samoa is long-line fishing.)

[10] Personal communications with Fiji based NGO, Pacific Dialogue 14, and 22 January 2020 that cited cultural reasons that Pacific Islanders faced if they spent more than 3 months at sea. These conversations also recalled a time in the late 1980s and 1990s when Fijians were able to secure worthwhile working conditions on smaller, well managed long line fishing boats that offered a standard daily rate and a share of a shark finning bonus but crucially only went out to sea for 3 months at a time

[11] (ILO reports that while human rights abuses can occur anywhere in the fishing industry the worst reported human rights violations in the industry involve migrant workers who are employed aboard fishing vessels (ILO, 2013a)). An estimated 1.8 million people are enslaved in the agricultural/fishing sector (ILO and Walk Free Foundation 2017, with forced labour slavery being “persistent” in marine fisheries (Shen & McGill, 2018). The main reasons for poor working conditions in the fishing industry are because the market demands more tuna at lower prices meaning the fishing industry responds to maintain competitiveness by keeping labour costs low and because the activity of fishing takes place in areas that are challenging to regulate effectively (Poor labour conditions are more likely to exist in industries that rely on high labor intensity and low technological investment and operating in the informal economy under poor regulations (Chuang 2006, ILO 2009)) The pressure to cut costs leads to conduct like engaging low cost labour from countries where labour costs are low and regulation is poor (migrant labour), using flags of convenience to evade effective regulation and to exert pressure on PICs to provide favourable outcomes ("Shifting Tides in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean Tuna ...." 16 Nov. 2018, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.) While primarily profit driven, there is also evidence that Distant Water fishing vessels actively seek out coastal countries where enforcement capacity and governance is weak ("Shining a Light: The Need for Transparency across Distant ...." 1 Nov. 2019, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020). In this context, initiatives by PICs via regional organisations to improve the management of their tuna fishery and to secure more in return for access and other fees, may lead to the unintended consequence of contributing to further economic pressure to reduce costs within the fishing industry.

[12] The crew members who bear the brunt of the poor working conditions frequently have low levels of education, experience language barriers and have a lack of access to advice and information. They frequently report being recruited by agents who fail to explain the terms and conditions of their employment. Once recruited the crew member may have no prior fishing experience, no desire to be a crew member, may have to remain on board for months or years and could have been recruited under false pretences, made to work 20 hour work days, be underage and witnessed horrific crimes#. Further, the crew member is unlikely to meet the immigration requirements to enter any of the PIC jurisdictions, may not be holding their own passport, and may even be instructed to remain below deck and hidden during any port visit (Personal communication with ex-foreign fishing crew member in Fiji who had been involved in fishing industry who remained at sea for 18 months in these circumstances - conversation on 23 January 2020).

[13] These adverse consequences frequently occur during port visits and include dealing with the effect of fights, murders, and increased demand for sex workers and drugs leading to an increase in the trafficking of both. These consequences increase the pressure on regulatory authorities and medical facilities in PICs and are a hidden cost incurred by the State - personal communications with Pacific Dialogue on 14 and 20 January 2020.

[14] The ports most utilised by the top distant water fleets of China, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea and Spain are: Dakar, Conakry, Majuro, Suva, and Nuoadhibou. Also targeted is Honiara. The majority of the DWF fleets operate in the Pacific as well as East and West Africa - Stimson “Shining a Light: The Need for Transparency across Distant Water Fishing”

[15] "Complex linkages between forced labor slavery and ...." 3 Jun. 2019, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

[16] Elizabeth Havice and Liam Campling: “Shifting Tides in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean Tuna”

[17] While generally based on common law there are some differences among PICs, with Marshall Islands, FSM and Palau being based on the law of the United States which in turn is based on English common law with some divergences and Vanuatu uses a mixed legal system combining English common law, French civil law and indigenous customary law. Tokelau is based on a mix of Tokelau law and New Zealand law and therefore there is some application of common law. However, the broad basis of common law underpinning the legal systems across PICs provides general uniformity in the way that the laws are both formulated and implemented

[18] Being based on common law means that the principles of Parliamentary sovereignty and the division of powers between the legislature (Parliament), the executive (government) and the judiciary are present across PICs. From a public/administrative law perspective it means that Parliament via legislation (Statutes/Acts) delegates powers to Ministries and government departments including relevant authorities that regulate labour standards and fishing activity. Those delegated powers must be exercised within the parameters of common law and should include according due process/natural justice to anyone adversely affected by a decision made by an authority on behalf of the State. It also means that fisheries and labour authorities cannot act beyond or outside their powers and the relevant national court/judiciary has an oversight function in relation to the exercise of their powers.

[19] Including admiralty jurisdiction that may allow a crew member to make a civil claim against the vessel when docked within a jurisdiction with admiralty jurisdiction. Admiralty jurisdiction recognises that the vessel itself is a thing that can create a debt (known as a maritime lien) that is then owed by the vessel and/or vessel operator/owner - to the crew. Because this maritime lien is attached to the vessel it also travels with the vessel and means that the claim can be made in any jurisdiction that the vessel stops in that has Admiralty jurisdiction

[20] Only Fiji, Samoa, Cook Islands, Tuvalu and Kiribati have adopted comprehensive employment legislation that covers all aspects of the employment relationship between employer and employee at both individual and collective levels.

[21] In general, key labour conventions have not been widely adopted in the Pacific, with only seven PICs having ratified the 1930 Forced Labour Convention and none having acceded to the Protocol of 2014 to the Forced Labour Convention, 1930. The one fishing industry specific labour convention, the 2007 Work in Fisheries Convention, has also not been adopted by any PICs, however at the time of writing this convention was also not widely in force internationally, with only 18 States having ratified the convention, and 14 States having the convention in force.

[22] The challenges include, but are not limited to, the high costs of doing business in Pacific Islands caused by geographical disadvantages. Arguably, poor policy decisions, low standards of governance and political instability have all contributed to make it difficult for locally based fishing companies to be successful. Commonly cited examples of poor governance include a lack of coordination between government departments, policy instability and a lack of planning to reduce costs and red-tape for business. In relation to the latter point, in the World Bank rankings to show the ease of doing business globally, Samoa receives the highest ranking of all PICs at 98, dropping down to Kiribati at 168. Other key PICs include: Fiji (102), Tonga (103), Vanuatu (107), PNG (120), Solomon Islands (136), Palau (145), Marshall Islands (153), FSM (158) ("Rankings - Doing Business." There have also been examples cited of misuse of incentives and corruption to attract domestic processing operations ("Governance of tuna industries: The key to economic viability ...." as well as untoward political influence and a general lack of transparency in relation to access agreements ("Shining a Light: The Need for Transparency across Distant ...." 1 Nov. 2019,

[23] "Impacts of 2018 Tuna Commission measures on Pacific island ...." 4 Feb. 2018, Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

[24] "Impacts of 2018 Tuna Commission measures on Pacific island ...." 4 Feb. 2018, Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

[25] "Impacts of 2018 Tuna Commission measures on Pacific island ...." 4 Feb. 2018, Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

[26] "Impacts of 2018 Tuna Commission measures on Pacific island ...." 4 Feb. 2018, Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

[27] However, also see: Palau example has reportedly led to the exit of foreign tuna fishing vessels with the consequence that the pressure on reef fish species has increased. The criticism is that at present there is not a domestic fishing fleet to fill the void left by the departure of the commercial fishing vessels.




This legal bulletin is provided for guidance and information purposes only and is not and should not be taken as legal advice

Topics: Oceans Law, Human Rights, Pacific, human rights at sea, Flags of convenience, Labour standards at sea, human rights abuses at sea, Parties to the Nauru Agreement, UNCLOS, International Law, Maritime boundaries, Sovereignty, Traditional fishing rights, Integrated Oceans Management Policy, fisheries management, Environmental governance, Environmental decision making, fisheries law, Fiji commercial lawyers, Law of the Sea Convention, Sovereign Rights, Integrated Oceans Management Pacific, traditional rights, Pacific Blue Economy, Blue Economy, Pacific Island Rights, Tuna fisheries, WCPFC, Tuna Management Pacific, Covid-19, Pacific Island Fisheries

Written by James Sloan

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