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Seychelles Signs Treaty To Refuse Landing IUU Tuna

The Seychelles has become the first African nation to formally sign an international treaty meaning that illegally caught tuna and other ocean fish cannot enter its market.

The agreement that is planned to come into force in 2014 will rule that countries refuse landing and services to any vessels that have been involved in illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.

The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization first adopted the Port State Measures Agreement (PMSA) in 2009, and the Pew Charitable Trusts that has supported it since its foundations is now encouraging countries to sign in order for the agreement to reach its proposed start date. 18 more countries are still required to ratify the treaty for it to move forward. 

Although the Seychelles does not boast a large land mass, its Port Victoria is one of only four commercial ports in the Western Indian Ocean where many purse seiners and long liners  land or transship their tuna catch.

It is also home to IOT, one of the worlds largest tuna canneries, owned by Thai Union Frozen Products Plc. Most of the cannery’s production is shipped to the European Union.

The Seychelles holds a strong position in the fight against illegal fishing, and its government is also a partner in Fish-i Africa, a regional cooperation of seven southeast African countries which together share information, resources and plans towards the eradication of unlawful fishing, which since its launch in 2012 has already seen several successes.