In recent years, I have worked with many countries through contracts with FAO and other organizations that have contributed to the successful implementation of the MSP and its components. At the operational level, the PSMA requires port states to examine the following mechanisms: the effective implementation of the agreement ultimately contributes to the long-term conservation and sustainable exploitation of marine biological resources and ecosystems. When the Port Measures Agreement (PSMA) came into force in 2016, the United Nations welcomed it as the beginning of a new era in the fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (INRI fishing). More than 25 governments had ratified or otherwise signed the treaty, exceeding the threshold needed to bring it into force. This figure more than doubled in the years that followed. But can a single treaty create a mechanism strong enough to combat widespread disregard for fishing laws and policies? We think the answer is yes, but the agreement is as good as the parties that comply with it and impose it. The treaty provides that fishing vessels apply for permission to dock in a port and to inform the port of the details of its fishing activities. Permission to moor may be refused if the unregulated fishing has taken place. This measure is intended to prevent illegally caught fish from entering the market. Other measures of the treaty include inspection of ship equipment, paperwork, captures and recordings.
Although the treaty does not require countries to apply these measures to ships flying their own flags, they may opt for this measure as part of the agreement.   For more information, see: pewtrusts.org/endillegalfishing Port State Measures (MSP) are requirements or measures taken by the port state by a foreign fishing vessel or to which a foreign fishing vessel is subject as a condition for the use of ports within the port state. National MSPs will generally include requirements related to pre-notification of port entry, use of designated ports, restrictions on fish entry and disembarkation/transfer, restrictions on deliveries and services, documentation requirements and port inspections, and related measures, such as the list of INN vessels, trade-related measures and sanctions. Fishermen involved in INN operations have traditionally relied on a number of tactics and loopholes in national laws and administrative procedures to put their catches of the ship on the shelves. They have operated ports known for lax prosecutions or limited capacity to conduct regular inspections. PsMA is changing that. Parties to the agreement may refuse entry to their ports or access to port services, including landing and transshipment, to foreign-flagged vessels known to have engaged in INCu fishing. At the port entrance, these vessels are subject to immediate inspection and these results are shared with other relevant states and organizations to facilitate cooperation in enforcement measures.