Global insurers unite to cut financial lifeline to pirate fishing

06 October 2017

Leading insurers from around the world have committed to take action on pirate fishing, an unlawful practice that costs the global economy tens of billions of dollars in losses every year and contributes to overfishing and the destruction of vital marine habitats and ecosystems.

, , , and have co-sponsored the world’s first insurance industry statement on sustainable marine insurance. confirms their commitment to not knowingly insure or facilitate the insuring of vessels that have been blacklisted for their involvement in pirate fishing—also known as illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. This pioneering initiative was launched at the in Malta, an international gathering of world leaders hosted this year by the European Union.

IUU fishing is an unresolved and internationally pervasive problem, with illegal and unreported fishing costing the global economy between USD 10 billion and 23.5 billion annually, which translates to 11 million to 26 million tonnes of fish

To tackle IUU fishing on a global scale, Oceana and the PSI facilitated the development of a landmark industry statement on sustainable marine insurance——for insurers to support efforts that can help reduce and ultimately eliminate IUU fishing.

Currently, more than 20 leading insurers, insurance market bodies and key stakeholders from across the globe have signed and supported the Statement. Oceana and the PSI are calling on more insurers, reinsurers, brokers and agents to sign the Statement. Industry bodies and stakeholders such as insurance associations, insurance regulatory and supervisory authorities, and civil society groups are also welcome to show their support by becoming a supporting institution to the Statement.

Ending IUU fishing is underscored in —the UN’s “healthy oceans goal”—by committing countries to take action to eliminate IUU fishing by 2020.

Beyond the Statement, Oceana and the PSI will be working with insurers to enhance risk management and insurance underwriting guidelines in order to reduce the risk of insuring vessels and companies associated with IUU fishing.

Going forward, the PSI will shape the broader sustainable marine insurance agenda at the global level and harness the role of the insurance industry as risk managers, insurers and investors to help achieve UN Sustainable Development Goal 14.

Access the full Press Release here and the statement .

Access the full LinkedIn post .