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Journal of Ocean and Coastal Economics

Document Type

Application Notes

Abstract

In 2009, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) adopted the Agreement on Port State Measures to Prevent, Deter and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing (PSMA). Countries that ratify the treaty commit to exert greater control at ports over foreign-flagged vessels to detect IUU catch before it is offloaded from vessels, and prevent the ill-gotten catch from entering the world’s markets. The PSMA, when effectively implemented globally, will be a major deterrent to IUU fishing. A major challenge to selecting ports for enhanced controls has been the lack of data on which ports are the world’s largest or busiest. There is no global ranking of major fishing ports of any kind, so the goal of this work was to identify, rank and characterize the world’s ports for the purpose of assessing what the impact the PSMA could have at the country level. This list of the top 100 ports by landed tonnage is one of the first of its kind to be published as a single consolidated dataset, and it is intended as a starting point in the further assessment of activity in the world’s fishing ports.