Future conservation under discussion for Atlantic tunas and sharks

ICAAT wants to protect shark species by implementing a ‘Fins naturally attached’ policy ICAAT wants to protect shark species by implementing a ‘Fins naturally attached’ policy

The amendment of conservation measures for Eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean Bluefin tuna is the main item on the agenda at the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna (ICCAT) Annual Meeting.

It’s thought that the meeting will be used to push for a more sustainable, science-based management of fish stocks, in line with the EU Common Fisheries Policy and to find an agreement on the amendment of the ICCAT Convention.

The meeting will also offer an opportunity to take stock of the remarkable improvement in the conservation status of the Eastern stock of Atlantic Bluefin tuna after the adoption of a recovery plan by ICCAT in 2008.

Review

Ten years ago, the dire state of Eastern stocks of Atlantic Bluefin tuna generated widespread concern, but for a few years now steady progress has been made towards recovery of the stock leading to the need for ICCAT to review the management measures in light of its improved status.

Consequently, the EU will seek to secure the adoption of a management plan for Eastern bluefin tuna that better reflects the current stock situation.

The EU will also seek to secure the adoption of the first ICCAT harvest control rules for North Atlantic Albacore and other measures, including to protect shark species by implementing a ‘Fins naturally attached’ policy requiring that sharks are landed with their fins naturally attached to their bodies and to address the dire state of shortfin mako sharks.

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