EU plans to protect tunas and swordfish

15 Nov 2011
The EU has said it will table ambitious proposals for the conservation of Mediterranean swordfish, tropical tunas and sharks. Credit: Joey Brookhart/Marine Photobank

The EU has said it will table ambitious proposals for the conservation of Mediterranean swordfish, tropical tunas and sharks. Credit: Joey Brookhart/Marine Photobank

At the ICCAT Regular Meeting, the European Union has said that it will table ambitious proposals for the conservation of Mediterranean swordfish, and tropical tunas and sharks, in line scientific recommendations.

The EU will also promote mitigation measures against incidental catches of seabirds.

At the meeting, the EU and other ICCAT Contracting Parties will agree on management and control measures for the sustainable protection of tuna and tuna-like species in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean. These measures will be based on scientific advice released on 17 October 2011 and will include the setting of TACs for species including bigeye tuna, and North and South Atlantic albacore, where recommended by the ICCAT scientific committee.

The TAC set for bluefin tuna in 2012 of 12,900t is expected to be maintained, as no new advice has become available in the meantime. The EU has said that utmost attention will be paid to check that all Contracting Parties comply with the conservation and enforcement rules in place to ensure a level playing field between parties and to strengthen the measures' efficiency.

The EU has also said it will continue to lead the development of an electronic Catch Documentation System for Bluefin Tuna (e-BCD), which would replace the existing paper-based system, and will promote the adoption of Catch Document Programmes for other species managed by ICCAT.

The ICCAT (International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas) meeting is being held in Istanbul from 11-19 November.

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