Edited by Stephen Tully
Chapter 67: FAO: Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, 1995
Commentary: The UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS, UN Doc A/CONF.62/122 (1982), entry into force 1994) grants coastal States rights and responsibilities for sustainably managing and using fishery resources within their exclusive economic zones (EEZs). By the late 1980s, it was apparent that fisheries resources would be unable to satisfy international demand for fish and fish products. In 1991 the FAO Committee on Fisheries (COFI) called for new management approaches embracing sustainable exploitation, conservation and environmental protection. The 1992 International Conference on Responsible Fishing in Cancun requested the FAO to prepare an international Code of Conduct addressing these concerns. Developing this instrument was carried out in collaboration with FAO members, interested nonMembers, relevant UN Agencies, other international organisations and NGOs. Negotiations included a Technical Consultation in 1994 and a Working Group and Technical Committee during 1995: see Annex 1 concerning background information on the origin and elaboration of the Code. Negotiators were mindful of the desirability of harmonising Articles 6 and 7 of the Code with the Agreement for the Implementation of the Provisions of UNCLOS Relating to the Conservation and Management of Straddling Fish Stocks and Highly Migratory Fish Stocks and the 1993 FAO Agreement to Promote Compliance with International Conservation and Management Measures by Fishing Vessels on the High Seas. Article 3 of the Code states that it is to be interpreted and applied in conformity with these and other relevant international legal rules. The FAO Conference Resolution adopting the Code called upon ‘States, International...
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