The 34th Session of the G16 Like-minded Coastal States of the Indian Ocean was held in Dubai, UAE, from 18 – 20 September 2023. A total of 29 individuals attended the Session, comprised of 21 delegates from 15 IOTC Contracting Parties, and 8 observers/experts. The meeting was opened and chaired by the co-chairs, Dr. Hussain Sinan and Dr. David Wilson.
The objective of the meeting was to review the latest draft of the TCAC Chair’s proposal on an allocation regime and to strategise for the upcoming IOTC’s 12th session of the IOTC Technical Committee on Allocation Criteria (TCAC12). The members noted with concern, the stock status of species and the delay in the progress of the allocation negotiations, and agreed that urgent action was required by the IOTC. Suggestions were made by the members to improve the current proposal, and it was agreed that the Interim Secretariat and Co-Chairpersons will liaise together to share the position of the G16 with the TCAC Chair ahead of the 12th Session of the TCAC. The meeting also briefly discussed mechanisms to engage with countries that have objected to the interim rebuilding plan for yellowfin tuna in the Indian Ocean.
Prior to closing, the G16 Program of work for the upcoming year (2023-24) was also finalised, which included capacity development and training opportunities for the members. The meeting was generously supported by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the Sustainable Fisheries and Communities Trust (SFACT).