Joint Opening Statement to the 32st Annual Meeting of the North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission

Joint Opening Statement of WWF, Pew, Oceana, Seas At Risk, and the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition to the 32st Annual Meeting of the North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission, 11 November 2013

Mr. Chairman, Distinguished Delegates and Observers,

Thank you for once again providing with us the opportunity to observe and address this meeting. I am delivering this statement on behalf of WWF, the Pew Charitable Trusts, Oceana, Seas At Risk and the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition.

Review of Consolidated Text of all NEAFC recommendations on regulating bottom fishing 

This year, the NEAFC contracting parties are due to adopt a revised set of regulations to regulate bottom fisheries to protect Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems (VMEs) in the NEAFC Regulatory Area. In this regard, we would like to acknowledge the efforts of NEAFC parties to align the current Consolidated Text of all NEAFC recommendations on regulating bottom fishing with the language of the United Nations General Assembly Resolutions on high seas bottom fisheries, specifically Resolutions 61/105 and 64/72, as discussed at the PECMAS meeting in October 2013.

We welcome the Proposal by PECMAS for a Recommendation on the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems in the NEAFC Regulatory Area (AM 2013-24) and recognize that this proposal is a significant improvement over the proposal put forward to the Annual Meeting in 2012.

We urge Contracting Parties to adopt the Proposal by PECMAS for a Recommendation on the protection of vulnerable marine ecosystems in the NEAFC Regulatory Area (AM 2013-24). 

Read the full statement