CHILE: At its last meeting, held in Mexico City, the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) approved Chile’s request to participate in this organization with the status of Cooperating Non-Party State.
The Commission establishes two ways of participating: as a Member State, that is, with voting rights and indefinite participation; and as a Cooperating Non-Party State, status giving the right to participate in the convention, without the right to vote, and for a period of one year, which may be renewed.
The undersecretary of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Pablo Berazaluce, stressed the importance for Chile that the management oriented towards the sustainability of fish stocks based on the best available scientific information has. He further emphasized that he recognized its responsibility and role as a coastal State as well as the need to cooperate in accordance with the norms of international law.
"In this way, our country takes a new and important step in the collaborative work for the sustainable management of the fishing resources that are distributed inside and outside our jurisdictional waters as well as in the control of foreign fleets operating in the adjacent high seas," stressed the undersecretary.
Berazaluce clarified that this action does not affect the operations of national fleets fishing for swordfish and other species associated with tuna.
"Our country has high administration and fishing operation control standards, such as the use of satellite positioning systems in vessels exceeding 15 metres, national scientific observation program, annual monitoring of highly migratory fishery resources, among others, so our fleets will not face any new demands," he stressed.
He also informed that through the zonal directions a release process is being developed with the country’s swordfish fishermen to clarify doubts and to make the scope of this measure known.
Cooperation with the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission stems from the obligations taken by the State of Chile in its adherence to the 1995 UN Fish Stocks Agreement (New York Agreement), since Chile was a party to this agreement and expressed definitive commitment to the rules governing fishing activities on highly migratory species mentioned on the high seas, such as the tuna and swordfish species that this organization regulates.