Yesterday, Peru formally accepted the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Fisheries Subsidies Agreement, thus strengthening the ranks of major marine fishery producers who have affirmed their support for the historic deal. The agreement prohibits support for illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing, as well as fishing of overfished stocks and unregulated subsidies on the high seas.
Ana Cecilia Gervasi Díaz, Peru’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, presented the country’s instrument of acceptance to Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, WTO’s General Director, during the act held in Geneva, Switzerland.
Thus, Peru accepts the new binding multilateral rules adopted by consensus at the 12th WTO Ministerial Conference (MC12). At this meeting, the participants actively emphasized curbing harmful subsidies, specifically those connected to the depletion of global resources. Therefore, this agreement advocates sustainability and more equitable development, establishing a fund to provide technical assistance. Its main objective is building capacity to help least-developed countries implement the obligations.
“I warmly welcome Peru’s formal acceptance of the WTO Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies,” said Okonjo-Iweala. “Peru’s status as one of the leading marine fishing producers is a strong signal of the importance of the Agreement for global fisheries sustainability. This action serves as a tremendous impetus to the growing support for the urgent implementation of this agreement. By curbing harmful fisheries subsidies globally, we are taking an important step towards safeguarding the exports, livelihoods, and food security of the people in Peru and across the world.”
One third of the two needed to become effective achieved
Peru’s formal acceptance is the fourteenth instrument received by the WTO, and it holds great significance for its contribution to the global fishing sector. To put the agreement into effect, it requires acceptance by two-thirds of all WTO members. Presently, more than one-third of the necessary acceptances are already secured, indicating substantial progress toward the agreement’s implementation.
“The ratification of this Agreement is an example of the responsibility of my country towards the multilateral trading system,” said Gervasi. “We are honored to be the first Latin American member to deposit the instrument of ratification of the Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies. We trust that with this act we will motivate the rest of the membership.”
Furthermore, at MC12, members reached a consensus to proceed with ongoing negotiations on unresolved matters. Their objective is to propose recommendations during MC13, scheduled for February 2024 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. These recommendations aim to introduce supplementary provisions that will strengthen and improve the disciplines of the Agreement even further.
About World Trade Organization
The World Trade Organization (WTO) stands as the singular global international organization responsible for regulating trade rules among nations. Most of the world’s trading nations have actively negotiated, signed, and ratified the WTO agreements, forming the foundation. The primary purpose is to ease trade in the smoothest, most predictable, and unrestricted manner possible.
The Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies delivers on the mandate from the 11MC in Buenos Aires. Moreover, it aligns with SDG 14.6, a part of the 2030 Agenda adopted by UN members in 2015. This remarks the significant impact of the WTO’s involvement in advancing the global fisheries subsidies agenda.