Fisheries Issues in WTO and ACPEU Trade Negotiations

image of Fisheries Issues in WTO and ACPEU Trade Negotiations
Three papers presented at a meeting of African, Caribbean and Pacific Fisheries and Trade experts in April 2003. The meeting’s primary concerns were the future of relations between the ACP and the EU, and preparing ACP countries for Economic Partnership Agreement negotiations.

The first paper, ‘The Future of European UnionACP Fisheries Relations’, looks at the increasingly complex ACP/EU relationship. The second, ‘WTO Fisheries Subsidies Negotiations: Implications for Fisheries Access Arrangements and Sustainable Management’, outlines a possible fisheries framework agreement. The third paper, ‘Elements of an ACPEU Framework Agreement on Fisheries Arrangements’, looks at the WTO fisheries subsidies negotiations, considers the impact they will have on developing countries and suggests riskmitigation strategies.



Implications of WTO Disciplines on Fisheries Subsidies

The clamour for fisheries subsidies disciplines at the WTO has been strenuously supported by NGOs and Inter-Governmental Organisations (UNEP, FAO, APEC, World Bank). The nexus between fisheries subsidies and stock depletion is now accepted wisdom, so that policy-makers no longer even consider the internal dynamics of the global capture fisheries. However, even if by some deus ex machina effective subsidies disciplines are negotiated at the WTO, the dynamics of rising global population, rapid economic growth, which has increased income and demand for fish, and the application of sophisticated technology to the last primitive huntergatherer activity will mean that global fisheries will not survive unless global disciplines to limit access to sustainable levels are negotiated in the appropriate forum, i.e. the FAO or the UN.


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