Mauritius Signs International Treaty to Protect Ports From Illegally Caught Fish

Mauritius Signs International Treaty to Protect Ports From Illegally Caught Fish

Mauritius has ratified the Port State Measures Agreement (PSMA), the international treaty designed to prevent illegally caught fish from entering the market through legitimate fishing ports. An island nation in the Indian Ocean, Mauritius joins Seychelles, Gabon, Mozambique, and Somalia to become the fifth African nation to sign on to the agreement. More are expected to join the PSMA in the coming months.

Mauritius© Chris Jenner

Port Louis, Mauritius, Africa

Mauritius has become the become the fifth African nation to sign on to the Port State Measures Agreement.

In 2003, Mauritius committed to transforming the country into a major seafood hub for its maritime region. Since then, it has achieved its goal of becoming a nucleus for the trade, processing, and distribution of fish. At the same time, however, illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing has become a larger problem as the nation’s port expands and its processing capacity rises.  Illicit fishing, which accounts for up to $23.5 billion in losses worldwide each year, could severely undermine the economic and social benefits that well-managed fisheries could provide the island.

Mauritius is already a member of FISH-i Africa, a collection of seven African nations that have committed to tightening the net around illegal fishing operations by pooling resources and sharing intelligence. So far, three FISH-i members have ratified the PSMA.

Arvin Booloell, the Mauritius minister of agriculture, continues to take a firm public stand against illegal fishing, acknowledging his nation’s position on the frontline of the fight. With its ratification of the PSMA, Mauritius now takes another critical step in efforts to combat illegal fishing, both in the western Indian Ocean and worldwide.  

Today, this East African country joins 17 other governments, including the European Union, that have acted to stem illegal fishing by acting on the PSMA. The agreement will enter into force when 25 governments adopt legislation.

Tony Long directs the ending illegal fishing project at The Pew Charitable Trusts.

Spotlight on Mental Health

Composite image of modern city network communication concept

Learn the Basics of Broadband from Our Limited Series

Sign up for our four-week email course on Broadband Basics

Quick View

How does broadband internet reach our homes, phones, and tablets? What kind of infrastructure connects us all together? What are the major barriers to broadband access for American communities?

Pills illustration
Pills illustration

What Is Antibiotic Resistance—and How Can We Fight It?

Sign up for our four-week email series The Race Against Resistance.

Quick View

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also known as “superbugs,” are a major threat to modern medicine. But how does resistance work, and what can we do to slow the spread? Read personal stories, expert accounts, and more for the answers to those questions in our four-week email series: Slowing Superbugs.

Explore Pew’s new and improved
Fiscal 50 interactive

Your state's stats are more accessible than ever with our new and improved Fiscal 50 interactive:

  • Maps, trends, and customizable charts
  • 50-state rankings
  • Analysis of what it all means
  • Shareable graphics and downloadable data
  • Proven fiscal policy strategies


Welcome to the new Fiscal 50

Key changes include:

  • State pages that help you keep track of trends in your home state and provide national and regional context.
  • Interactive indicator pages with highly customizable and shareable data visualizations.
  • A Budget Threads feature that offers Pew’s read on the latest state fiscal news.

Learn more about the new and improved Fiscal 50.