Fisheries and Land Resources

Fisheries and Aquaculture

Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization

NAFO is the regulatory agency responsible for fisheries conservation and management of most fish stocks beyond the Canadian 200 mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) in the Northwest Atlantic.

The members or contracting parties to NAFO meet annually to discuss management and conservation issues for the stocks of the NAFO Regulatory Area (NRA). The province of Newfoundland and Labrador is actively involved in developing the priorities, objectives, and strategy for Canada as a member of the Canadian delegation. It is a year-long process in preparation for the annual NAFO meeting which occurs in September of each year.

For more information visit Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization. opens new window

The province's dissatisfaction with the operations of NAFO is well known. The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has continually stated that Canada must pursue custodial management. The solution involves Canada, as the coastal state, achieving greater rights, duties and authorities over those straddling stocks which are most important to our coastal communities.

In 2006, NAFO began a reform process. This province has been seeking changes to the current management approach which will ensure:

  • Greater coastal state responsibilities with respect to straddling fish stocks;
  • Adherence to scientific advice;
  • Consistent management measures both inside and outside the 200-mile limit.

Canada ratified amendments to NAFO Convention in December 2009 despite the position of the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador that these changes were not adequate in addressing the concerns of the province.

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