Brazil Finally Signs World Agreement on Sustainable Fishing

Brazilian fishing boat The Brazilian government openly backed the Compliance Agreement of the United Nation's (UN) Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), which aims to promote compliance of international conservation and governance measures by fishing vessels that operate on the high seas, as well as combat poaching activities.

The head of the Special Secretariat of Aquaculture and Fisheries (SEAP), Altemir Gregolin, deposited the instrument of acceptance on behalf of Brazil during a ceremony held last week at FAO's Rome headquarters.

The Agreement is one of the few international legally binding instruments that address fishing activities in high seas areas outside the exclusive economic zones (EEZ).

Member countries participating in the Agreement, among which Brazil is now party, must guarantee that vessels flying their flag abide by responsible fishing practices on the high seas.

"Our country is proud to have actively participated in all processes of negotiation of the international legal framework in force related to fisheries and aquaculture activities," Gregolin declared.

"This instrument of acceptance represents the reaffirmation of the Brazilian government's commitment to fisheries sustainability through the full exercise of its responsibilities, jurisdiction and control over Brazilian flagged fishing vessels."

Meanwhile, FAO Assistant-Director General for Fisheries, Ichiro Nomura, pointed out: "With every country that participates in the Compliance Agreement, we are coming closer to the goal of making sure that every boat that fishes on the high seas is doing so in a responsible way that ensures the long-term, sustainable use of marine fisheries resources."

"We welcome Brazil's participation and look forward to seeing more countries follow their example," Nomura added.

The Compliance Agreement came into effect on 24 April 2003 when the 25th FAO Member, the Republic of Korea, deposited its instrument of acceptance to the Directorate General of the United Nations (UN) Organization.

The present parties to the FAO Compliance Agreement are: Albania, Angola, Argentina, Australia, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Brazil, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, Cook Islands, Cyprus, Egypt, the European Community, Georgia, Ghana, Japan, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mexico, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Peru, the Republic of Korea, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, Seychelles, Sweden, Syrian Arab Republic, Tanzania, the US, and Uruguay.

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