Pacific Ministers raise their concern to the WTO Director

February 29, 2024 9:53 am

[Source: Ministry of Trade, Co-operatives, SMEs and Communications/ Facebook]

Deputy Prime Minister Manoa Kamikamica led a meeting with the Director-General of the World Trade Organization Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and all Pacific Ministers to discuss concerns about the Fish 2 agreement.

The Pacific Ministers expressed concerns that the current text of the fisheries subsidies agreement fails to address the crucial issues of overcapacity and overfishing.

They emphasized that the agreement unfairly penalizes Pacific states that responsibly manage their fishery resources.

Article continues after advertisement

The minsters also proposed a clause targeting the cessation of subsidies aimed solely at facilitating distant water fishing, aligning with the UN Sustainable Development Goals 14.6 mandate.

Kamikamica says the agreement will permanently lock in an industrial structure, preventing the Pacific from utilizing its resources.

[Source: Ministry of Trade, Co-operatives, SMEs and Communications/ Facebook]

Fiji submitted a proposal for a standstill and rollback to WTO members, stating negotiations will be unsuccessful without these measures.

Negotiations concerning the region hold significant weight in the global fisheries industry and can affect the livelihoods of numerous communities.

The Pacific minister urges all WTO members to reaffirm their commitment to safeguarding global fisheries for the benefit of present and future generations.