17 Jul 2018

Fiji joins treaty to stamp out illegal fishing

9:22 am on 17 July 2018

Fiji's parliament has agreed to sign up to a key treaty to stamp out illegal fishing.

Fresh fish for sale in Nadi fish market in Viti levu Island, Fiji.

Photo: Rafael Ben-Ari

The treaty, known as Port State Measures, is administered by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Under the agreement, Fiji will be obliged to implement several measures in its ports aimed at detecting illegal fishing, stopping the fish from being offloaded and sold, and ensuring information on unscrupulous vessels is shared globally.

Foreign fishing vessels would have to request permission to enter Fiji's ports and transmit detailed information about their identities, activities, and the fish they have onboard.

The Fiji government said Fiji joining Port State Measures will strengthen the region's ability to exclude illegal vessels from visiting vulnerable nations that have small administrations.

Fiji will be the sixth member of the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency to sign up.

The other Pacific island countries which are parties to the agreement are Palau, Tonga and Vanuatu.