Transshipment Policies by Regional Fisheries Management Organizations

Transshipment Policies by Regional Fisheries Management Organizations 2020-07-27T14:07:53-04:00

Measures to monitor, control, and survey transshipment activities set by the five regional fisheries management organizations (RFMOs) are outlined below. These criteria were used to inform authorization data within the carrier vessel portal. They apply to authorized carrier vessels operating within the relevant RFMO Convention Areas transshipping species managed by the RFMO. 

The Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna (CCSBT)

Transshipments at sea from large-scale tuna longline fishing vessels (LSTLV) with freezing capacity include the following requirements:

  • Carrier vessels that receive southern bluefin tuna transshipments at sea from LSTLVs must be authorized to receive such transshipments; and
  • A CCSBT observer must be on board the carrier vessel during the transshipment.

Transshipments in port must be made to an authorized carrier vessel (container vessels are exempt) at designated foreign ports and meet additional requirements including: prior notification to port State authorities; notification to flag States; and transmission of the CCSBT transshipment declaration to the port State, flag State, and CCSBT Secretariat.

Full details of the CCSBT transshipment program and the requirements for fishing vessels engaged in transshipments can be found in Resolution on establishing a Program for Transhipment by Large-Scale Fishing Vessels

The Inter-American-Tropical-Tuna-Commission (IATTC)

Transshipments at sea made to carrier vessels authorized by their respective flag party, cooperating non-party, or cooperating fishing entity (CPCs) must meet the following requirements:

  • Carrier vessels must be listed on the IATTC Record of Carrier Vessels;
  • Carrier vessels authorized for at-sea transshipment shall be required to install and operate a vessel monitoring system (VMS) in accordance with Resolution C-14-02 on the establishment of a VMS; 
  • Carrier vessels may only engage in transshipment activities for tuna and tuna-like species with large-scale tuna longline fishing vessels (LSTLFV) authorized by IATTC;
  • Carrier vessel master/operator must complete and transmit the IATTC transshipment declaration to IATTC and the flag CPC of the LSTLFV within 24 hours of completion of the transshipment; and
  • Carrier vessel master/operator must transmit an IATTC transshipment declaration to the competent port authorities 48 hours before landing in port.  

Full details of the IATTC transshipment program and requirements for fishing vessels engaged in transshipments can be found in Resolution C-12-07

The International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT)

Transshipments at sea to carrier vessels flagged to participating ICCAT parties, entities, or fishing entities (CPs) must be monitored as part of the ICCAT Regional Observer Program (ROP) for transshipment. The ROP includes the following requirements for carrier vessels:

  • Carrier vessels must be authorized by their flag CP to operate in the Atlantic and be included in the ICCAT Record of Carrier Vessels;
  • Carrier vessels must have an observer from the ICCAT ROP on board when receiving at-sea transshipments;
  • Carrier vessel masters/operators must sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the implementing consortium; and
  • Carrier vessels must pass a pre-sea inspection by the observer before embarkation.

Full details of the ICCAT ROP for transshipment and requirements for fishing vessels engaged in transshipments can be found in Recommendation 16-15

The Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC)

Transshipments at sea to carrier vessels authorized by flag State or entity (CPC) must meet the following requirements:

  • Carrier vessel master/operator must confirm that the large-scale tuna longline fishing vessel (LSTLV) is participating in the IOTC program to monitor transshipment at sea;
  • Carrier vessel master/operator must confirm that the LSTLV has obtained prior authorization to engage in transshipment from their flag CPC;
  • Carrier vessel master/operator must complete and transmit the IOTC transshipment declaration to the IOTC Secretariat and flag CPC within 24 hours of completion of the the transshipment event; and
  • Carrier vessel master/operator must complete and transmit the IOTC transshipment declaration to the competent port authorities 48 hours before landing in port.  

Full details of the IOTC observer program to monitor transshipment at sea and requirements for fishing vessels engaged in transshipments can be found in Resolution 19-06

The Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC)

Transshipments at sea to carrier vessels flagged to a members, cooperating non-members and participating territories (CCMs) must meet the following requirements:

  • Carrier vessels must be authorized to transship on the high seas as fish carriers and be listed on the WCPFC Record of Fishing Vessels; and
  • Carrier vessel master/operator for vessels flagged to a non-CCM shall be responsible for reporting against the vessel unless it is operating under a charter arrangement. 

Transshipment activities that take place wholly in archipelagic waters or territorial seas are excluded from these requirements. Transshipment activities that take place in waters under national jurisdiction are subject to the national laws of the relevant coastal State. 

Full details of the WCPFC regulation of transshipment and requirements for fishing vessels engaged in transshipments can be found in Conservation and Management Measure 2009-06.