International Law now Prohibits Illegal Fishing in Foreign Waters

Countries can now be held liable for illegal, unreported or unregulated fishing operations in the waters of other countries by private fishing.

“This is a very welcome ruling that could be a real game changer,” said WWF International Marine Programme Director John Tanzer. “No longer will we have to try to combat illegal fishing and the ransacking of coastal fisheries globally on a boat by boat basis.”


Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing in coastal waters costs the world between $US 10-20 billion annually, undermines fisheries management and robs coastal communities of food and livelihoods.

West African waters are believed to have the highest levels of IUU fishing in the world, representing up to 37% of the region’s catch.

Sources: and WWF