Various Intersessional Activities to follow up to the Commission decisions

    After the Commission meeting held in July this year, NPFC has conducted various intersessional activities, which is to follow up to the Commission decisions adopted at the meeting.



    Two data meetings were held in Xiamen, China

    Recognizing the importance of data for sound scientific assessments, the NPFC held a 3-day workshop and a 4-day meeting in Xiamen, China from 7-15 November 2018.


    The first one, Workshop on data requirements and data sharing for Small Scientific Committees on Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems (SSC VME) and Bottom Fish (SSC BF), basically aimed at developing wish lists of data needed to move forward with management of bottom fisheries and protection of VMEs in the NPFC Convention Area. Workshop participants from Canada, China, Japan, Republic of Korea and Russia identified minimum common resolution for combined fishing footprint and effort mapping and SAI assessments. They drafted a list of potential data to be consolidated for predictive modeling, potential iterative predictive models and potential collaborators. In addition, they reviewed the status of the NPFC’s identification and protection of VMEs and discussed the monitoring survey plan for North Pacific armorhead which shall commence in 2019 in accordance with adaptive management process adopted by the NPFC (CMM 2018-05).


    The meeting of the Technical Working Group on Pacific Saury Stock Assessment focused on data preparation in order to update the stock assessment of Pacific saury which is one of the highest priority tasks for the NPFC. Meeting participants representing six NPFC members (China, Japan, Republic of Korea, Russia, Chinese Taipei and Vanuatu) reviewed availability, quality and uncertainties of data to be used for stock assessment update with the agreed provisional base model (BSSPM). They finalized the abundance indices, formulated specifications of the BSSPM and developed a template for stock status information and future projection. They also shared catch and effort data and had initial discussions on a single joint standardized CPUE index. The TWG PSSA will have another meeting in Yokohama, Japan on 6-9 March 2019 to update the stock assessment of Pacific saury.



    Update on Compliance Activities

    Revised and new CMMs entered into force.

    The decisions become binding on all Members as of 17 November 2018:

    • NPFC IUU Vessel List for 2018 under CMM 201702
    • HSBI Implementation Plan under CMM 201709


    The fourth meeting of the TCC Small Working Group on Vessel Registry (SWG VR) occurred via WebEx on 18 October to carry on from the issues addressed at COM04 and other outstanding issues regarding vessel registration. Participants reviewed the recommendations for SWG VR adopted as COM04, amended Vessel Registry Manual for Members’ Vessel Registry Managers as a reference on how to enter vessels on the Direct Entry Vessel Registry, Secretariat activities done for the interim vessel registry, Chartering of Member Carriers and/or Fishing Vessels, Transshipment Monitoring Scheme. The next SWG VR is scheduled with date and time to be determined and announced accordingly through invitation.    


    The first meeting of the TCC Small Working Group on Operational Enforcement (SWG OE) occurred via Webex on 30 October. Participants reviewed the SWG Operational Enforcement Terms of Reference, updates on High Seas Boarding and Inspection plan status including Online Inspection Vessel and Authority Registry, Flags and Pennants, Handbook/Compendium of CMMs, NPFC SWG OE Collaboration Space – HSBI Form Repository, Monitoring of non-Member vessels. The Secretariat reminded The Secretariat reminded Members to provide: their inspection vessel information, authority for inspection vessels, authority for fishing vessels, sample inspector identification cards to the Secretariat for posting on the NPFC HSBI webpage; and translation of the boarding questionnaire. 


    Additional Compliance activities including;

    • Web page set up to accept Members’ entries for identification of patrol vessels, sample Inspector ID cards, authorities for Fishing Vessels, Inspectors and Patrol Vessels
    • The Direct Entry Vessel Registry has been implemented and is being used by all Members
    • The eIUU vessel listing application is currently online for trials by Members and is expected to go on to the production page of NPFC in early January. 
    • The e Annual reporting application is in final review stages by the Secretariat with expectations for it to be released for trial to Members in January 2019 and into full production for the Annual reports of 2019 activities in February 2020.
    • The Secretariat notified Embassies for nonMember Carriers twice of the fact that the Interim Registry is due to expire 60 days after the 2019 Commission Meeting with the suggestion that they become Cooperation Non-Contracting Parties to the NPFC.



    Future Meetings

    Intersessional meetings planned to progress scientific advice to the Commission: TWG CMSA02/BRF-HCR-MSE WS/TWG PSSA04 on 27 Feb-5 Mar. 2019, Japan.


    Intersessional TCC SWG meetings are expected to take place to address issues on Vessel Registry; Operational Enforcement in early 2019; Assessing Compliance (29 November 2018) and VMS (4 December 2018).


    The meetings scheduled for 2019 fiscal year are as follows; SC and three SSCs - held back to back from 15 to 26 April 2019 in Korea, TCC/FAC/Commission - held back to back from 11 to 18 July 2019 in Japan.