WWF position for the 24th session of the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC) | WWF
WWF position for the 24th session of the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC)

Posted on 07 September 2020

There is a dire need to engage in meaningful dialogues and coordination among fisher communities and relevant governments, who must come together at the regional fisheries management organizations to reduce fishing pressure and safeguard rights of small-scale fishers in the Indian Ocean.
WWF recognizes the unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19 and the economic and social impact on the fishery sector in the Indian Ocean. Workers on ships are vulnerable to infectious disease and often lack access to health care – risks exacerbated by COVID-19. These wide-ranging impacts include failure to access markets and poor pricing in local or domestic markets from small-scale fisheries. In addition, stricter border and trade controls have led to reduced fishing opportunities for coastal countries whereas large-scale fishing continues. This growing situation may further marginalize and exacerbate the vulnerabilities of small-scale fishers.
 
There is a dire need to engage in meaningful dialogues and coordination among fisher communities and relevant governments, who must come together at the regional fisheries management organizations to reduce fishing pressure and safeguard rights of small-scale fishers in the Indian Ocean. To reach this goal, IOTC’s Contracting Parties must adopt ambitious measures contributing to fair, resource-efficient and resilient development; stop overfishing in the Indian Ocean; and act immediately to adopt a robust rebuilding plan for recovery of the yellowfin tuna stock. They must exercise precautionary management aimed at long-term sustainability ensuring food security and a resilient ecosystem.

WWF’s priority outcomes for the 24th Session of the Commission are detailed in PDF at right. 
WWF calls on the IOTC to adopt a robust rebuilding plan for recovery of the yellowfin tuna stock.
© Brian J. Skerry / National Geogr;