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The 35th Session of the G16 Like-minded Coastal States of the Indian Ocean was held in Dubai, UAE, from 28 – 29 April 2024, co-chaired by Dr. David T. Wilson (South Africa) and Dr. Hussain Sinan (Maldives). A total of 25 individuals attended the session, comprised of 17 delegates from 14 IOTC Contracting Parties, and 8 observers/experts.

The objective of the meeting was to review the latest proposals submitted by CPCs to the 28th Session of the IOTC. The discussions were mainly focused on the proposals relating to the management of Fish Aggregating Device (FADs), measures to improve Monitoring, Control and Surveillance (MCS) and measures to conserve and sustainably manage the stocks of key IOTC species such as skipjack and yellowfin tuna. Suggestions were made by the members to improve the current proposals, and agreements were made with regards to how the members of G16 will move forward with the proposals at the 28th session of the IOTC. The group also deliberated on approaches to effectively engage CPCs that have previously objected to the interim rebuilding plan for yellowfin tuna in the Indian Ocean.

Prior to closing, the G16 Program of work for the reminder of the year 2024 was also discussed, which included the workshop on Regional Fisheries Management Organization (RFMO) strategies and negotiation, delivered by Australian National Center for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS), for the G16 members. The meeting was generously supported by the Australian Government, Blue Marine Foundation, Sustainable Fisheries and Communities Trust (SFACT) and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).

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