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Conservation group calls for Pacific leaders to combat overfishing

A United States based conservation group says it is worried that negotiations on reducing tuna fishing in the Pacific is taking place behind closed doors.

The Pew Charitable Trust is calling on participants at the tenth annual Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission meeting in Cairns this week to agree to tighter controls on bigeye catches.

The Director of global tuna conservation for Pew, Amanda Nickson, says there is no excuse for decisions that allow overfishing to continue.

“It’s of grave concern to us that those negotiations have immediately been taken into a small working group that is allowing only one observer who is not allowed to speak and not allowed to report back. So essentially they have become fairly closed door negotiations and lacking in the transparency that we would expect out of a body like this.”

Amanda Nickson says a consensus must be reached during the decision making process and says political will is a driving factor for all participating countries in reaching an agreement on tuna management.



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