The Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) controls the world’s largest sustainable tuna purse-seine fishery. PNA countries provide around 50% of the global supply of skipjack tuna, the most commonly canned tuna.

PNA members are: Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu.

Under the Palau Arrangement/Purse Seine Vessel Day Scheme (amended April 2016) the total allowable effort per management year is the maximum number of fishing days allocated to all licenced purse-seine vessels operating in the Exclusive Economic Zones of all parties to the agreement. A Longline Vessel Day Scheme operates similarly.

The maximum number of fishing days for either purse-seine or longline fishing is determined based on the best available scientific, economic, management and other relevant advice and information, including the current status of fish stocks.

The annual meeting of the Parties reviews the implementation of measures designed to maintain and conserve fish stocks – including the effectiveness of measures designed to reduce fish mortality, especially for young bigeye and yellowfin tuna.

The PNA has two main practices for conserving its fish stocks:

  1. limiting the catch of all fishing vessels through the vessel day scheme, explained in more detail under ‘Catch & Harvest’
  2. banning the use of fish-aggregating devices by purse-seine fishers.
Effective management of tuna stocks is vital for SIDS economic development. A baiter at work throwing into the water. Photo credit: Francisco Blaha