Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing
Fighting Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing in
One in five fish taken from the ocean comes from illegal fishing. Having more public information on who can fish what, when, and where would help ensure better fisheries management and protection of the ocean.
SHARE TO SHOW YOUR SUPPORT:
One in five fish taken from the ocean comes from illegal fishing. Having more public information on who can fish what, when, and where would help ensure better fisheries management and protection of the ocean in Europe and worldwide.
A lack of transparency in the global seafood supply chain means that it is difficult to know who can fish what, where, and when. Illegal fishers take advantage of these gaps in the system, especially in countries where governance is weak or lack the capacity to monitor fishing activity in their waters.
IUU fishing is a low-risk, high-reward activity, especially on the high seas where a fragmented legal framework and lack of effective enforcement allow it to thrive. Illegal fishing can include fishing without authorisation, ignoring catch limits, operating in closed areas, targeting protected wildlife, and fishing with prohibited gear. These actions not only contribute to overfishing, but also give illegal fishers an unfair advantage over those who play by the rules.
In June 2023, we celebrated a major win as a new EU law on fisheries control will make vessel tracking compulsory for all EU fishing vessels. This measure will improve knowledge of the fishing grounds and protect areas where fishing is forbidden. The law also includes the most advanced traceability rules worldwide, which will digitally cover all fish and incorporates transparency provisions to ensure that civil society organisations can hold states accountable for effectively monitoring fishing activities and enforcing the rules.
Oceana is part of the EU Fisheries Control Coalition to ensure that fisheries management in the EU safeguards ocean health and marine life, and of the EU IUU Fishing Coalition to promote EU leadership in improving global fisheries transparency to end IUU fishing.