Fish Trade, Fisheries Subsidies and SDG 14

11 December 2017
02:30 - 04:00 hrs. Sheraton Buenos Aires Hotel & Convention Center
Buenos Aires
, Argentina


The fisheries value chain is governed by a complex framework. A variety of trade policies implemented by countries, including tariffs, subsidies, and non-tariff measures, such as food safety and sustainability standards, have a significant influence in shaping fisheries production and trade, particularly in relation to market access.

Some forms of fisheries subsidies could have a detrimental impact, contributing to: IUU fishing, overfishing, overcapacity and to the depletion of fish stocks. Regulating harmful fisheries subsidies can therefore assist in reducing unfair competition in accessing fisheries resources at sea, whilst at the same time seeking to safeguard fisheries resources, livelihoods and ecosys​tems.

Any future disciples on fish subsidies must be built on relevant international treaties and instruments applicable to sustainable fisheries under the United Nations and its specialized agencies.



UNCTAD, FAO, UN Environment and the Commonwealth have already organized several activities in have already organized several activities in Geneva, Rome, and New York throughout 2016 and 2017, including the recent events at the United Nations Ocean Conference. The main objective of the event will be to provide a greater understanding among WTO negotiators on recent trends in trade in fish, the value of the existing UN regulatory framework on the law of the seas and fisheries for fish subsidies negotiations and discuss most relevant fish related NTMs for developing countries.

Key Discussion Issues:

  1. The significance of fish and fish products to international trade, food security, nutrition and poverty reduction and development
  2. The Regulatory Framework and Relevant International Instruments applicable to Fisheries - Cover key international instruments that underlie and contribute to a functional fisheries management system and the development of potential disciplines on fish subsidies.
  3. Trade Barriers in Fish Trade - An overview of non-tariff measures faced by the fish sector in accessing international markets – which may include harmful fishing subsidies - and how they affect market access, particularly from developing countries.

Expected outcome:

  • Contribute to consensus building at the political level toward a potential solution for disciples to fish subsidies at the WTO Ministerial
  • Provide a platform for deeper understand of trade related aspects of SDG 14, including regulatory issues, market access and fish management systems.


Mr. Peter Thomson United Nations Special Envoy for Oceans

Dr. Mukhisa Kituyi Secretary-General of UNCTAD, Welcoming remarks

Key notes:

Mr. Julio A. BerdeguéAssistant Director General and Regional Representative for Latin America and the Caribbean, FAO Keynote
Dr. Josephine Ojiambo Deputy Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Keynote


H.E. Ms. Reina Ylia Josefina Sotillo Minister, Representative before the Federal Council of Fisheries of Argentina and Vice President of the FAO Committee on Fisheries - Fish Trade (COFI-FT)
H.E. Mr. Wera Mori Minister for Trade, Commerce and Industry, Papua New Guinea
Mr. Stefaan Depypere Director for International Ocean Governance and Sustainable Fisheries, EU (DG MARE))
Ms. Ane Storvestre Bjørkum Senior Adviser, Ministry of Food and Fisheries, Norway
Ms. Mónica Maldonado CEO, Cámara Ecuatoriana de Industriales y Procesadores Atuneros (CEIPA), Ecuador
Mr. Pradeep S. Mehta Secretary General, Consumer and Trust Society (CUTS International)
In Partnership With  
The Commonwealth   ​​
UN Environment   ​​
UNECE   ​​

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FAO, Commonwealth, UN Envrionment

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UNCTAD: Mr. David Vivas Eugui

UN Environment: Anja von Moltke

FAO: Marcio Castro De Souza

Commonwealth: Jodie Keane