Monitoring, Control and Surveillance of large pelagics in the Indian Ocean

This was a large scale pilot-project aimed at testing the conditions for regional cooperation in MCS. The overall aim of this intervention is to bring about a reduction in poverty and to increase food security in the ACP countries of the IOC through sustainable management of the regional resource of large migratory pelagics and  pave the way for a longer term initiative to ensure sustainable fisheries management through strengthened MCS capacity – the essential component of regional fishery management.  Areas of intervention broadly included:

• Harmonisation and development of members States’ legislation and legal process, adapted to the international judicial instruments and, in particular, to the IOTC management regime including harmonisation of Regulations, Licence conditions and penalty scales;

• Improvement of data collection and processing to permit management of both domestic and foreign flag fisheries, to meet data reporting obligations to IOTC as well as to provide information to negotiate access agreements and to monitor licensed vessels;

• Installation of a “PortState control regime”, specifically targeting IUU (illegal unregulated and unreported) activities, with development of harmonisation of inspection procedures, training and standards;

• Improvement and construction of information flows between agencies dealing with fisheries management in IOC members and between IOC members, notably in providing a detailed listing of active tuna fishing vessels;

• Development of VMS (vessel monitoring systems) standards (and installation of new systems), ensuring that falsification of information is prevented and data are used for verification of statistical reporting, as well as for enforcement;

• Economic studies and the harmonisation of licensing requirements and fee levels;

• Organization of aerial and sea patrols both at national level and through joint operations alongside the training of at-sea inspectors and observers: and,

• Through specific pilot studies evaluation of IUU activities (nature, scale, drivers) related to tuna fisheries in the region using targeted aerial surveillance, VMS data and new satellite technology (e.g. remote sensing such as SAR satellite optical imagery etc), and through the analysis of oceanographic data development of predictive tools for operational IUU targeting



Start Date: 

Friday, 21 January, 2005 to Wednesday, 23 January, 2008

Services Provided: 

  • Institutional strengthening;
  • Legal drafting and harmonisation;
  • Enhancement and standardisation of regional data collection and exchange procedures;
  • Development and harmonisation of inspection procedures and training;
  • Development of regional MCS capacity.
  • IUU assessment and predictive analysis

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Client Address: 

United Kingdom

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Origin of Funding: 

EU 9th EDF


Mauritius, Seychelles, Comoros, Madagascar, La Réunion (on behalf of France).