Palau credited for U.S. success on Pacific tuna treaty
U.S. State Department official Edgard Kagan has credited the freely associated state of Palau for the federal government’s successful negotiations with Pacific countries on a tuna treaty.
Kagan was testiying early this week before a U.S. House Subcommittee on the compact free association between the United States and Palau.
In his written testimony presented to the congressional panel, Kagan said Palau “is a key and constructive player in helping set the tone of our negotiations with 16 Pacific Island nations on the extension of our South Pacific Tuna Treaty.”
“This treaty guarantees access to South Pacific waters to our tuna fleet in return for specific obligations in terms of environmental regulation, conservation measures, and other important efforts to sustain the viability of South Pacific tuna stocks long-term,” he said.
“The value of this treaty to the United States has averaged more than $360 million a year over the past three years, and I am glad to report that we have made significant progress toward reaching an agreement that will ensure that access, and the support for thousands of tuna industry jobs here in the United States and American Samoa, for some time to come,” he added.