Seychelles Disappointed After Iotc Members Delay Decision On Yellowfin Tuna Limits

Seychelles has expressed its disappointment over the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission’s failure to adopt revised measures geared toward the rebuilding of yellowfin tuna stock in the Indian Ocean during a special session last week.

The March 8-12 special session discussed the sustainability of fishing yellowfin tuna and addressed deficiencies in the harvest control rule for skipjack tuna. IOTC member countries opted to delay any decision on yellowfin catch limits until the commission’s annual meeting in June.

The principal secretary for fisheries, Roy Clarisse, told a press conference on Tuesday that it is regrettable that these amendments were not adopted.

“We in Seychelles are really disappointed that none of the resolutions have been approved. It is really important that these resolutions are approved to ensure that the stock of yellowfin tuna and tuna stock, in general, remains sustainable,” said Clarisse.

Yellowfin tuna in the Indian Ocean is currently the most overfished tuna stock in the world. In 2016, the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC) adopted a resolution reducing the fishing allowance of the species by 15 percent to help rebuild the population.

Maldives and the European Union (EU) tabled proposed amendments to Resolution 19/01 on an interim plan for rebuilding the yellowfin tuna stock in the IOTC area of competence. The proposal sought to further reduce the fishing limits on yellowfin tuna, apply the reduction to all yellow tuna fishing vessels and revise the percentage reduction per gear.