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10/05/2049 - Fish stocks Management - A regional strategy finally in place

Mis à jour : 5 nov 2019

The management of marine resources has always been a major challenge since the first observations by scientists of the drastic decline in natural stocks more than thirty years ago.

But faced with the geopolitical difficulties linked to the delimitation of maritime areas and the differences in political status of the different territories and maritime zones of the Pacific, management and especially the protection of stocks has since always been a problem.


This problem is heightened by the fact that the Pacific, by its size and biodiversity, represents one of the last areas where stocks remain in a relatively acceptable situation compared to the Atlantic or the Mediterranean, which for more than a decade now , have arrived at a quasi-desert zone stage in terms of biodiversity.


The perception of the threat to the Pacific zone has been slow to reach the political spheres and to push for concrete action.


Until recently, the region knew far too many organizations and other intergovernmental organizations, each intervening in its own "backyard" without real collaboration beyond the usual actions of exchange of information and expertise. But this proved to be far from sufficient, and in recent years there had been calls for more and more urgent calls to define a central authority for the Pacific that would ensure the coordination of regulatory actions and could put in place real control and coercion at the regional level.


Of course, state sovereignty has long been the major obstacle to such progress!


But things seem to be changing, and the last meeting of the Pacific Islands Forum members endorsed the creation of a task force of representatives from all member countries to set up a monitoring agency for Pacific Marine Resources Management.


The coordination of small island states was key in this project and the representatives of the various governments did not fail to welcome this capacity for collective work.


The objective will be to set up a specialized agency for the management and protection of marine resources with the main objective of maintaining the priority over local populations rather than maintaining an economic sector whose historic mismanagement has led to the current danger situation.


The organization will be granted a power of coercion that will be supranational and will thus avoid the pressure of large states that want to disregard the rights of states in the region.


Let's hope that the task force will quickly carry out its work with a view to the rapid commissioning of this new institution. Because for decades the message is the same "time is running out".