ICFA Statement on the Kunming-Montreal Biodiversity Framework

|Press Release

22 December 2022 (Ottawa, ON) The COP15 biodiversity negotiations concluded on 19 December 2022. The International Coalition of Fisheries Associations (ICFA) recognizes the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework and thanks the Parties for showing cooperation to secure an ambitious biodiversity agenda to 2030 and towards 2050.

Sustainable use is one of the three pillars of the Convention on Biological Diversity. It is important to remember that fish are biodiversity and its use for food is not an option. Sustainable fisheries are critical to global food security and many economies. In fact, fisheries support the livelihoods of over a third of the world’s population.

ICFA is pleased to see in the Framework recognition of effective management for sustainable use of biodiversity resources, including to contribute to food security; complementarity and cooperation with other international agreements and organizations (e.g. RFMOs and FAO); and, inclusion of Other Effective area-based Conservation Measures (OECMs).

Paul Lansbergen, President, Fisheries Council of Canada, and an ICFA Vice-Chair, was in Montreal at the negotiations. “The Framework recognizes the positive relationship sustainable use can deliver for conservation of biodiversity. It is not either or in the fisheries sector and the men and women who work the water need to continue to be responsible stewards of the resource,” said Lansbergen. He continued, “It’s not good enough that 82.5% of the world’s harvests are from sustainable fish stocks. 100% of global fish stocks should be sustainable and support sustainable use.”

ICFA members recognize key elements of implementation will be spatial planning, transparency of action plans, and consultation with industry stakeholders. These elements will foster predictability which will better enable the sector to invest in innovations and enhanced practices – thereby strengthening its already solid contribution to biodiversity conservation.

The International Coalition of Fisheries Associations (ICFA) is a coalition of the national fish and seafood industry trade associations from the world’s major fishing nations. ICFA’s members represent countries harvesting more than 85% of the globe’s fish.

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