FAO Workshop on the Management of Deep-sea Fisheries and Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems in the Mediterranean, Rome, Italy, 18-20 July 2016.
The FAO Workshop on the Management of Deep-sea Fisheries and Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems in the Mediterranean took place from 18 to 20 July 2016 at FAO headquarters in Rome, Italy. The workshop was organized in close collaboration with the General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM). The meeting addressed issues relating to the definition and management of deep-sea fisheries and vulnerable marine ecosystems (VMEs) in the Mediterranean, within the framework of the International Guidelines for the Management of Deep-sea Fisheries in the High Seas (2008). These guidelines provide guidance to States and regional fisheries management organizations or arrangements (RFMO/As) on the long-term conservation and sustainable use of marine living resources in the high seas. This includes preventing significant adverse impacts on VMEs by bottom-contact fishing gear. The meeting reviewed current global and regional practices on the management of deep-sea fisheries, and discussed relevant international processes and instruments related to deep-sea fisheries and VMEs. The workshop characterized deep-sea fisheries in the Mediterranean, reviewed the current GFCM management measures specific to deep-sea fisheries and biodiversity protection, and addressed specific issues related to VMEs (such as the use of VME indicator species lists and encounter protocols), with the aim of providing inputs to ongoing discussions within GFCM about required management measures to sustainably harvest deep-sea stocks and protect vulnerable habitats.