Media Releases

Report from visits from Australia, Fiji, Kiribati to FFA last week

HONIARA, SOLOMON ISLANDS, 7-10 MARCH 2011: High level delegations from member countries of the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) - Australia, Fiji and Kiribati - visited the regional headquarters of the agency last week to tour the Regional Fisheries Surveillance Centre and to discuss key fisheries issues.

In a formal high-level visit to FFA, Kiribati Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resource Development, the Hon. Peter Taberranang Timeon, accompanied by the Kiribati Permanent Secretary and a policy officer.

Kiribati has the largest Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ or national waters) of all the FFA member countries - a massive area of 3,550,000 square kilometres - posing a significant development opportunity and surveillance challenge for the small island developing state.

Unfinished business remains as WCPFC ends

HAWAII, US, 10 DECEMBER 2010: As the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) annual meeting closed today, FFA members said there was unfinished business that the Commission needed to address next year. While FFA members made advances on some technical issues, there were no decisions made on the critical issues of overfishing of bigeye and yellowfin tuna, catch of whales and dolphins, and adequate severity of punishment for illegal fishing. Pacific Island countries are the custodians of the last remaining healthy tuna stocks in the world and manage a marine area of 30 million square kilometres, supported with technical advice and services from the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA). FFA members participate at the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission along with other fishing nations (such as Asian nations, EU and US) to set rules for fishing in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean.

WCPFC Photos

This week the Annual Session of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) is being held in Ko Olina, Hawaii. News on outcomes from the meeting will be released on 10 December 2010 (Hawaii time). 

The Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) is the central decision making body for management of tuna fishing in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean. Conservation and management measures (CMMs) of the Commission are legally binding and apply to all WCPFC members and the Convention area. Whereas members of FFA are from the Pacific Islands, members of WCPFC are FFA members and distant water fishing nations.

POLYNESIAN COUNTRIES SEEK TO PROTECT AND MAXIMISE BENEFITS FROM FISHERIES THROUGH CLOSE COOPERATION

Senior representatives of the Fisheries Administrations of Cook Islands, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau and Tonga have just concluded a successful round of cooperation talks in Auckland, building on the signature of TeVakaMoana Arrangement (TVMA), in January. 

This release comes from the current Chair Mr Peter Graham, of the Cook Islands Ministry of Marine Resources.

“TVMA has formalised existing cooperation and lays a foundation for improved collaboration in fisheries. A core focus of this work is securing and realising the sustainable benefits and interests that TeVakaMoana participants have, and aspire to have, in highly migratory fisheries, throughout the Pacific.

The meeting in Auckland provided an opportunity to discuss strategies, confirm a work programme and map out next steps, including in advance of this year’s Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) meeting in Hawaii said Mr Graham.

Key fisheries meetings outcomes

HONIARA, SOLOMON ISLANDS OCTOBER-NOVEMBER 2010: The regional headquarters of the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) hosted 2 key meetings last week – the Management Options Consultation to develop FFA positions for the WCPFC meeting and the Special Forum Fisheries Committee to approve these decisions.

FFA members participated in the Management Options Consultation where countries work cooperatively to draft recommended negotiating positions and proposals for the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC). These were then brought to the 75th Officials Forum Fisheries Committee (FFC) for further discussion and endorsement. FFC outcomes on positions to take to WCPFC at its annual session in December include: