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Commission at Symposium on Tuna Tagging in the Indian Ocean

(26/10/2012) The European Commission is participating as a major benefactor in the Indian Ocean Tuna Tagging Symposium (30 October – 2 November 2012), in Grand Baie, Mauritius. The EU supported the research project, the Indian Ocean Tuna Tagging Programme (IOTTP), through the European Development Fund (EDF) and between 2002 and 2009 more than 200,000 tuna were tagged and released in various areas of the Indian Ocean. The aim of this project was to know more about the status and population dynamics of the main stocks of tropical tunas in the Indian Ocean.

This symposium will focus on the evaluation of the IOTTP so far. Today more than 31,500 tags have already been recovered in this project. This has given new insights into the spatial and migratory movements along with population dynamics and the biology of tropical tuna species such as Yellowfin, Bigeye and Skipjack. The latest results of this research which will be presented at the symposium will hopefully allow a debate on the relationship between science and management which should in turn lead to improvements in long-term sustainability, a fundamental objective in the EU's reform of its Common Fisheries Policy (CFP). The reformed CFP also advocates closer working partnerships with regional fisheries management organisations (RFMOs), in this instance the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC). As the world's leading market for fisheries and aquaculture products, the EU looks forward to the findings of the symposium, which will be an important indicator on the status of Indian Ocean tropical tuna stocks.