Palau will be getting help in form of technical assistance and training to combat illegal, unreported unregulated fishing especially on the capacity to implement Catch Documentation Schemes, which will enable fish to be tracked from source to shop.

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Minister of Natural Resources, Environment and Tourism (MNRET) Umiich Sengebau in an interview said assistance is coming in from developing nations to ensure that Palau and other small island nations fight illegal fishing.

A Palau delegation headed by President Tommy Remengesau Jr. attended the first meeting of the Parties to the new international treaty of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, aimed at combating illegal fishing in Norway during the first week of June.

The Agreement on Port State Measures to Prevent, Deter and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing (PSMA), has 46 parties, and the treaty, which entered into force in June 2016, represents the cornerstone of years of diplomatic efforts to combat the scourge of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU fishing), amounting to 26 million tons and a value of 23 billion dollars annually.

Palau was the first Pacific island state to ratify the international agreement.

Sengebau said  the Port State Measure intention is to “ curb or eliminate IUU, meaning whoever accede to this agreement should make sure that the fish that they are buying are not illegally caught.”

He said Palau cant accept fish caught unsustainably nor countries who are signatories to the treaty can accept fish illegally caught in Palau.

Palau ratifying the PSMA goes hand in hand with the strict rules against illegal fishing contained in the new marine sanctuary law.

Internationally, the port State measures have been identified as a key tool in the fight of the global community against IUU fishing.

PSMA will enhance regional and international cooperation and block the flow of IUU-caught fish into national and international markets. [/restrict]