16 Nov 2009

New South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management organisation could share vital data with FFA

2:43 pm on 16 November 2009

The Pacific Forum Fisheries Agency, or FFA, says it remains to be seen how much co-operation it will have with the newly formed South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management organisation.

At the weekend 27 countries formally adopted a treaty creating the organisation following a week of negotiations in Auckland.

The treaty will cover a vast region spanning from the South Indian Ocean through the Pacific towards South America - high seas where fish are vulnerable to illegal fishing and over-fishing.

While the new organisation deals mainly with different fisheries from his agency, the FFA's deputy director, Transform Aqorau, says they have common interests.

"I think there is the potential to discuss and co-operate in terms of MCS - monitoring, control and surveillance. But as I said we already have a vessel monitoring system in place, there is also the Tuna Commission VMS which covers tuna vessels operating on the high seas, so there's a lot of potential to exchange information and all that."

Transform Aqorau