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Voluntary Guidelines for Flag State Performance: A New Tool to Conquer IUU Fishing

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AbstractWithin the framework of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (fao), Voluntary Guidelines for Flag State Performance were adopted by the fao Technical Consultation on Flag State Performance on 8 February 2013. The Guidelines, which focus on the role of the flag State in combating illegal, unreported and unregulated (iuu) fishing and build on existing international law, constitute a ground-breaking international instrument. They set out criteria and procedures for the assessment of flag State performance, as well as provisions on cooperation between flag States and coastal States, compliance and cooperation with, and assistance to, developing countries. The Guidelines were adopted as a response to the lack of effective control by many flag States over their fishing and fishing-related vessels, mindful that flag States may generally be said to have the primary responsibility for preventing, deterring and eliminating iuu fishing.1 The Guidelines are a robust and comprehensive tool for enhancing international fisheries governance.

Affiliations: 1: Development Law Service (LEGN), Legal Office of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)RomeItaly; 2: Victoria, Seychelles and RomeItaly


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