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OUR WORK

Trade

International trade in fish and fish products is booming. Production is increasing on the back of growing demand across the world. Preservation and transport of produce is becoming cheaper. Lower tariffs have helped, as has the coming in of 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zones.

More than half the value of exports is from developing countries of Low Income Food Deficit Countries (LIFDC). ICSF monitors this trade from the perspective of small-scale fishers, analysing international and regional trade regimes, disseminating information about relevant developments to fishworker bodies, civil society and policymakers.

ICSF explains ecolabelling and other forms of certification and their implications for small-scale fishing communities and food security. The aim is enhanced capacity of fisher organizations to deal with trade on an even keel.

ICSF follows negotiations related to fisheries subsidies and other fisheries-related debates at the World Trade Organization (WTO), and follows regional trade agreements, to inform small-scale fishers about their implications for their access to resources and markets.

Current Programmes

ICSF continues to monitor and analyze information on developments in international trade and regional trade regimes and to disseminate information about such developments to fishworker organizations, CSOs and policy makers.

Resources

A Review of the Draft Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies (WT/MIN (22)/W/20), 13 June 2022 by ICSF

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International Collective in Support of Fishworkers (ICSF) A REVIEW OF THE DRAFT AGREEMENT ON FISHERIES SUBSIDIES (WT/MIN (22)/W/20) 13 June 2022     1. The International Collective in Support of...

Labels or Fables? The Myth of Sustainability: A collection of articles from SAMUDRA Report

Labels or Fables? The Myth of Sustainability examines the costs of certification of global fisheries and how it is allegedly biased towards industrial-scale fisheries. This dossier is a compilation of...

International legal instruments relevant to fisheries and fishing communities: A handbook on trade By Ramya Rajagopalan and Ahana Lakshmi, ICSF, 2006

This section provides information on instruments relevant to fisheries trade. This section also includes decisions on trade and environment that are important for the fishing industry. https://www.icsf.net/wp-content/uploads/2006/09/930.ICSF108.pdf

Untangling subsidies, supporting fisheries: The WTO fisheries subsidies debate and developing-country priorities By John Kurien, ICSF, 2006

This paper examines, from the fishery perspective of a developing country, the debate on the role of fisheries subsidies in the context of the negotiations relating to the General Agreement...

Report of workshop on emerging concerns of fishing communities: Issues of labour, trade, gender, disaster preparedness biodiversity and responsible fisheries venue: Fortaleza, Brazil Date: 04-06 July 2006 By ICSF, 2006

The workshop was co-hosted by the NGO Instituto Terramar. The document gives a detailed report of the presentations and discussions transpired in the workshop. The discussions at the workshop as...

Report of the Study on problems and prospects of artisanal fish trade in West Africa By ICSF, 2002

The study focuses on Guinea-Conakry, Senegal,Benin, Togo, Ghana, Gambia and Ivory Coast, which are either important producers or consumers of fish and have significant trade links with one another. The...

Workshop on problems and prospects for developing artisanal fish trade in West Africa By ICSF, 2001

A long-standing demand of the women of fishing communities in the region has been towards enhancing regional fish trade. It is against this background that the Workshop on Problems and...

Smoke in the water: Problems and prospects for developing artisanal fish trade in West Africa Produced by ICSF, 2001

This video provides an overview of the issues involved, and highlights many of the concerns of the actors in the fisheries sector. It also reports briefly on the workshop on...

Ca Fume Sur La Cote (Afrique de l’Quest: un avenir pour le commerce du poisson transforme par le secteur artisanal): French film Produced by ICSF, 2001

This video provides an overview of the issues involved, and highlights many of the concerns of the actors in the fisheries sector. It also reports briefly on the workshop on...

Shell out: The shrimp-turtle dispute at the WTO: Conserving sea turtles and protecting livelihoods (Draft) By Sebastian Mathew, ICSF, 2000

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The shrimp-turtle dispute at the World Trade Organization (WTO) between the United States and several Asian countries is the first case that involved a Multilateral Environmental Agreement (EU 2001). All...

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19th Session Sub-Committee on Fish Trade 2023: Blue Ports Initiative: Recent Progress and the Way Forward

The 34th Session of the Committee on Fisheries (COFI) highlighted the significance of inclusive and sustainable ocean economies to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In aquatic food value chains,...

19th Session Sub-Committee on Fish Trade 2023: Revised Questionnaire on Article 11 (CCRF)

This document provides guidance for FAO Members when completing the questionnaire on the implementation of Article 11 of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries (CCRF). Download  

Report of the Eighteenth Session of the COFI Sub-Committee on Fish Trade, Virtual meeting, 8 April to 8 May 2022, and 7, 8, 9 and 20 June 2022

The Sub-Committee on Fish Trade was established by the Committee on Fisheries to serve as a multilateral consultation forum for discussions on the international trade of fisheries and aquaculture products....

19th Session Sub-Committee on Fish Trade 2023: FAO Guidance on Social Responsibility in the Fisheries and Aquaculture Value Chains: Industrial Fishing

This document outlines the process FAO has undertaken to develop the first section of the FAO Guidance on Social Responsibility in the Fisheries and Aquaculture Value Chains (FAO Guidance), covering...

19th Session Sub-Committee on Fish Trade 2023: The Revision Process of the Article 11 Questionnaire of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries (CCRF)

This document provides an overview of the efforts made towards implementing the recommendations of the 18th Session of the COFI Sub-Committee on Fish Trade (COFI:FT) involving the questionnaire on Article...

FAO Database on Trade Agreements – Scoping Paper

This document outlines the importance, boundaries, global cooperation pattern and overall content of the proposed work of FAO on the development of an FAO database on regional trade agreements (RTAs)...

Biodiversity Conservation Initiatives and International Trade

This document examines the current consideration of commercially exploited aquatic species in Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) from a trade perspective and the difficulties that Members face in implementing and reporting...

19th Session Sub-Committee on Fish Trade 2023: Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing, the Agreement on Port State Measures (PSMA) and Trade-Related Issues

This document highlights the importance of utilizing the Port State Measures Agreement (PSMA) to avoid products originating from illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing entering markets at the landing point...

19th Session Sub-Committee on Fish Trade 2023: Enabling Sustainable Market Access and Trade for Small-Scale Fisheries (SSF)

Small Scale Fisheries (SSF) actors participate in a variety of markets at the global, regional and national levels. However, they may encounter challenges securing market access and generating sufficient benefits...

OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook 2023-2032

The Agricultural Outlook 2023-2032 is a collaborative effort of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). It brings...

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