The “Cape Town Agreement of 2012 agreed by 58 states will be open for signature ratification at IMO HQ early next year.
The new Agreement adopted at a recent diplomatic conference held under the auspices of IMO in Cape Town refers to the implementation of the provisions of the 1993 protocol relating to the Torremolinos International Convention for the Safety of Fishing Vessels, 1977”.
The safety of fishermen and fishing vessels forms an integral part of IMO’s mandate but the international instruments on fishing vessel safety which have previously been adopted by the Organization have not come into force due to a variety of technical and legal obstacles. Fishing at sea remains a hazardous occupation and the sector experiences a large number of fatalities every year. Bringing into force a binding international safety regime is expected to play a part in helping to improve safety standards and reduce the loss of life.
The Cape Town Agreement of 2012 will enter into force 12 months after the date on which not less than 22 States the aggregate number of whose fishing vessels of 24 m in length and over operating on the high seas is not less than 3,600 have expressed their consent to be bound by it.
The Agreement will be open for signature at IMO Headquarters from 11 February 2013 to 10 February 2014 and thereafter remain open for accession.