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Tuvalu Minister Opens PNA Annual Meeting On Sustainable Tuna

News: Tuvalu Minister Opens PNA Annual Meeting On Sustainable Tuna

FUNAFUTI, TUVALU, 4 APRIL 2011: The Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) annual meeting opened today in Tuvalu to discuss key issues around sustainable management and development of its tuna.

The Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) includes Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu. Collectively, the PNA controls 25-30% of the world’s supply of tuna and cooperate to sustainably manage and develop this key resource.

Many PNA conservation measures are world firsts – such as closure of 4.5 million square kilometers of high seas to fishing and the 100% coverage of purse seine fishing vessels with observers. The PNA was the first group of countries to ban setting of nets on whale sharks and has pushed for a broader regional ban at the regional level. PNA manages fishing effort through regulating the number of days fished in the PNA area every year, these fishing days are also traded between countries under the Vessel Day Scheme.

From Monday to Thursday officials will meet and draft recommendations for the PNA Ministerial Meeting which opens on Friday. Key issues for officials and Ministers include: •

DEVELOPMENT OF A LONGLINE VESSEL DAY SCHEME: Just as the PNA has developed a Vessel Day Scheme for purse seine fishing, it is also looking at developing a longline vessel day scheme to be implemented in future. • PURSE SEINE VESSEL DAY SCHEME TRADING OF DAYS: The implementation and use of the purse seine Vessel Day Scheme so far and update each other on progress. • ADDITIONAL CONSERVATION AND MANAGEMENT MEASURES: New measures and revised measures to conserve and manage tuna and related species in the PNA area and to propose to the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission. • PNA OBSERVER AGENCY: The PNA will launch its observer programme later in the year to support countries to meet and sustain the agreed objective of 100% observer coverage on purse seine fishing vessels. • PNA CREWING ON BOARD PURSE SEINE VESSELS: PNA earlier agreed on a 10% minimum Pacific Islander crew on board purse seine fishing vessels. • COMMERCIAL AND BUSINESS ARRANGEMENTS.

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Tuvalu Minister for Natural Resources, Isaia Taeia, in his opening speech, said to the officials: “You shall ask yourselves this question – What can we do to ensure that the stewardship of our very own national, regional and internationally shared fisheries resources is commensurate with the challenges of an ever-expanding international crisis in world fisheries?"

“It is my hope that one of the very clear and strong messages that will emerge from this meeting is that we, as individual PNA countries officials, bear the full responsibility for the sustainable and responsible management of our national fisheries resources, not our partners in the industrialized world. While our partners might be helping us put fuel in our tank, we deserve the right to sit behind the steering wheel.”


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