24 Oct 2013

Pacific nations make tough demands on the tuna commission

2:42 pm on 24 October 2013

The member countries of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission are set to face tough demands at their December meeting.

The body, with 25 member countries and territories, is facing calls from Pacific countries that they be compensated.

The limits to fishing bigeye tuna, skipjack, bluefin and southern albacore mean that some fisheries have to close early if they reach their weight quota or their allocated days for using fish aggregation devices.

They say their economies need to be compensated if they are forced to shut.

The Executive Director of the commission, Professor Glenn Hurry, says it will be tough to reach an agreement.

"For every additional month of the closure they want $15 million in compensation because of the disproportionate burden it puts on on Pacific island countries and trying to find a way of working through what might be a $15 million compensation package or where it might come from is going to be very challenging for the commission and it's one of those things I think is going to be very difficult to try and resolve."

Professor Glenn Hurry.