20th Regular Session of the Technical and Compliance Committee: Full Annotated Agenda

  • 1. Opening of Meeting
    • 1.1 Welcome

      The meeting will commence at 8:30am on Wednesday 25 September 2024.

      TCC Chair, Mr Mat Kertesz (Australia) will open the Twentieth Regular Session of the Technical and Compliance Committee (TCC20) of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) and welcome delegations of the WCPFC Members, Cooperating Non-Members and Participating Territories (CCMs) and Observers.

    • 1.2 Adoption of Agenda

      The Chair will present the Provisional Agenda for consideration and adoption. The Rules of Procedure provide that Members may propose supplementary agenda items until 30 days before the meeting (Rule 3).  The agenda, as modified, will need to be adopted by the meeting (Rule 5).

    • 1.3 Meeting Arrangements

      TCC20 will review the Indicative Schedule and consider logistical arrangements to support the meeting, including proposed meeting times, small working groups and any social events.

  • 2. Executive Director's Annual Report on Technical and Compliance Matters

    The Executive Director will provide a report on relevant technical and compliance issues, as well as key strategic issues for discussion at WCPFC21.

  • 3. TCC Workplan

    Update to be provided by the TCC Chair on an updated and consolidated workplan for 2024.

  • 4. IUU Vessel List

    In accordance with CMM 2019-07, TCC20 will review the current WCPFC IUU list and the draft IUU list, and any suitably documented information.

  • 5. CNM Requests

    In accordance with CMM 2019-01, TCC20 will consider the applications for Cooperating Non-Member (CNM) status in 2025 and provide recommendations and technical advice to the Commission.  A small working group is expected to review the applications and report back to plenary.

  • 6. Compliance Monitoring Scheme (CMS)
    • 6.1 Provisional CMR covering RY 2023

      2024 marks the fourteenth year of implementation of the CMS.  CMM 2023-04 Conservation and Management Measure for the Compliance Monitoring Scheme will apply from 2024 – 2026.

      TCC20 will review:

      • the assessment of the 2024 Compliance Monitoring Report (CMR) covering reporting year (RY) 2023 using audit points adopted by the Commission, 
      • the aggregate tables summarizing information in the WCPFC online compliance case file system (CCFS), and 
      • (as a trial in 2024) reports from relevant CCMs on their progress to resolve certain individual obligation implementation gaps from the previous year.

      TCC20 will develop a Provisional CMR for the previous reporting period (RY2023), considering any Capacity Development Plans developed pursuant to CMM 2023-04 paragraphs 16-18, and other information described in paragraph 28(ii), any additional information provided by CCMs, and, where appropriate, any additional information provided by non-government organizations or other organizations concerned with matters relevant to the implementation of the Convention. The provisional CMR will contain the following:

      1. an executive summary,
      2. a compliance status with respect to all applicable individual obligations as well as recommendations for any corrective action(s) needed by the CCM or action(s) to be taken by the Commission, based on potential compliance issues identified in respect of that CCM or collective group of CCMs, and using the criteria and considerations for assessing Compliance Status set out in Annex 1 of CMM 2023-04 ,   
      3. tables including aggregated data (templates attached in Annex III to CMM 2023-04 ) relating to the information provided in paragraph 11 of CMM 2023-04 , including recommendations or observations from TCC in accordance with CMM 2023-04 , and
      4. tables including reports by relevant CCMs on their progress to resolve certain individual obligation implementation gaps from the previous year/s, and TCC20 recommendations whether the previous year compliance status continues or if reporting now satisfies the audit point requirements. 
    • 6.2 Addressing the imbalance in the CCFS

      The scheme in paragraph 15 of CMM 2023-04 is intended to address the imbalance in observer coverage between the longline and purse seine fisheries in the compliance case file system (CCFS).  In support of the approach, the Secretariat is tasked in subparagraph (b) to develop and utilize, in consultation with the Scientific Services Provider (SSP), a scheme for randomly sampling observer-related cases from the online compliance case file system for the purse seine fishery on a trip basis designed to achieve the level of coverage in the CMR for ROP purse seine trips determined for the longline fishery by the SSP for the most recent year for which this data is available. 

      The Secretariat will provide an update on this task, and TCC20 is invited to discuss and as appropriate, provide advice and recommendations in support of the future use of this scheme in the CMS.

    • 6.3 Addressing outstanding CCFS cases

      At WCPFC20, the Commission requested CCMs to provide to the Secretariat information on the domestic statute of limitations, the allowable period to bring a prosecution, for various types of cases: fisheries offences and criminal offences (TCC19 Summary Report paragraph 170 (b)).  Noting that TCC has previously expressed a preference to address the issue of cases older than 24 months in the CCFS in a systematic way, TCC20 will consider the information provided by CCMs and provide advice and recommendations to WCPFC20.

    • 6.4 Provisional list of obligations for assessment in 2025 CMS

      TCC20 is tasked in CMM 2023-04 paragraph 6, to prepare a provisional list of obligations to be assessed in the following year’s CMS, using a risk-based approach as a possible guidance.  In completing this task, TCC20 may also provide advice and recommendations related to 

      • additional audit points needed to inform next year’s CMS process, and
      • the experience from this years trial streamlining approach which is intended to support tracking progress by CCMs to resolve their implementation gaps from previous year/s. 
    • 6.5 Future work to enhance the CMS

      The Commission has through the various CMS CMM’s committed to a multi-year workplan of tasks to enhance the CMS, with the aim of making it more efficient and effective by streamlining processes, including through the development of guidelines and operating procedures.  Paragraph 48 of CMM 2023-04 identifies a non-exhaustive list, which includes:

      (i) explore investment in technology solutions to facilitate improvements to the CCFS.

      (ii) the development of corrective actions to encourage and incentivise CCMs’ compliance with the Commission’s obligations, where non-compliance is identified.

      (iii) the development of the guidelines for participation of observers in closed meetings of the Commission and its subsidiary bodies which consider the Compliance Monitoring Report.

      At WCPFC20, the Commission has agreed to postpone the work on the development of corrective actions until sometime in the future (WCPFC20 Summary report paragraph 760). In accordance with paragraph 48 of CMM 2023-04 TCC20 will provide advice and recommendations related to workplan and resourcing requirements to facilitate the work of the Secretariat in support of future work to enhance the CMS. 

  • 7. Status of Fisheries Presentation and Updates on the Impacts of Climate Change

    The Commission at WCPFC20 tasked SC and TCC to include, as part of the standing agenda item on climate change, a review of available data to inform the Commission on climate change impacts to stocks and ecosystems in the WCPO, and the potential effects of climate change on related fishing activities (WCPFC20 Summary Report paragraph 220).  In this regard, TCC20 is expected to:

    • Receive brief updates from the SSP on the status of the WCPO tuna and billfish stocks and climate change impacts. 
    • Review the Ecosystem and Climate Indicator Report Card (WCPFC20 Summary Report paragraph 218).
    • Review a preliminary assessment of selected CMMs for their vulnerability to climate change impacts and consider the need for further work prepared by the Secretariat and SSP (WCPFC20 Summary Report paragraph 222).
    • Review and provide input to the Commission's DRAFT Climate Change Workplan, under development through intersessional work led by RMI and United States (WCPFC20 Summary Report paragraph 223).

    TCC20 will, as appropriate, provide advice and recommendations to the Commission.

  • 8. Supporting Science-based Management
  • 9. WCPFC's Monitoring Programmes
    • 9.1 CMM 2018-05 Regional Observer Programme

      Based on WCPFC20 outcomes there are two matters that TCC20 is expected to consider:

      • How CCMs can monitor their vessels compliance with CMM 2018-05 15 (g) (WCPFC20 Summary Report, paragraph 754 (d))
      • An update from the IWG-ROP Chair Mr Harold Vilia (Solomon Islands)
    • 9.2 Development of E-Monitoring Standards

      Update to be provided by the ER and EM IWG Chair, Dr Shelton Harley.

    • 9.3 CMM 2009-06 Regulation of Transhipment

      Update to be provided by the TS-IWG Co-Chairs, Dr Alex Kahl (USA) and Mr Felix Ngwango (Vanuatu).

    • 9.4 CMM 2014-02 Commission VMS

      Based on WCPFC20 outcomes there are three matters that TCC20 is expected to consider:

      • whether any amendments are required to VMS SSPs 7.2.4 to provide clearer language in relation to this reporting requirement (i.e. protocol for inspecting States to inspect ALCs/MTU of other CCMs vessels at sea, includes reporting requirements for inspecting States) (WCPFC20 Summary Report, paragraph 754(c)).
      • ongoing work to enhance CCM’s and Secretariat’s practices to integrate and facilitate ongoing monitoring and compliance with CMM 2014-02, and 
      • a routine update of the VMS Standard Operating Procedures to reflect the continual improvements made by the Secretariat to relevant WCPFC online systems and taking into consideration WCPFC20 outcomes.
    • 9.5 CMM 2017-02 Port State Minimum Standards

      TCC20 is to review CMM 2017-02 Port State Minimum Standards taking into account current Commission implementation of the measure, other RFMOs’ experience, the UN FAO’s Port State Measures and the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency regional PSM framework (TCC19 Summary Report, paragraph 332)

    • 9.6 Review data access and data exchange arrangements

      Update to be provided by the Secretariat on the progress to establish transhipment activity, observer reports, and carrier vessel data exchange arrangements with the following RFMOs: IATTC, IOTC, CCSBT, SPRFMO and NPFC (WCPFC20 Summary Report, paragraph 597)

      The Secretariat requests that TCC20 also consider reviewing the WCPFC’s Rules for Data Protection, Access and Dissemination to check that they adequately supports relevant CCMs in their implementation of CMM 2017-02 Port State Minimum Standards (or its replacement) and/or the FAO Port State Measures Agreement.  

    • 9.7 Scientific data gaps and relevant SC20 outcomes

      Based on WCPFC20 outcomes there is one matter that TCC20 is expected to consider:

      • review the SciData requirements to capture turtle interaction reporting requirements under CMM 2018-04, paragraphs 5c and 7e (WCPFC20 Summary Report, paragraph 754 (e))

      TCC20 will also consider relevant SC20 outcomes related to scientific data gaps and WCPFC’s Monitoring Programmes.

  • 10. Available Data for Verifying Compliance

    At WCPFC19, the Commission endorsed TCC18 recommendations which noted that compliance with some obligations cannot be independently verified from available data sources, and tasked the Secretariat to develop a paper, which identifies those obligations for which there is a lack of independently verifiable data, as well as potential sources of data that could provide independent verification of those obligations.  TCC19 reviewed this paper, and at WCPFC20 the Commission endorsed the TCC19 recommendation that noted the paper’s value in guiding and enhancing the work of TCC and the Commission, as well as relevant intersessional working groups, and tasked the Secretariat with providing this paper as a standing paper and agenda item for TCC in the future (TCC19 Summary Report, paragraphs 222 – 223).

    TCC20 is tasked to consider whether any adopted audit points for Quantitative Limit obligations require additional verification sources or processes to better facilitate compliance assessments (WCPFC20 Summary Report paragraph 754 (f)).

  • 11. Labour Standards

    Update to be provided by the Co-Chairs, Ms Putuh Suadela (Indonesia) and Ms Heather Ward (NZ).

  • 12. Supporting CCMs with Monitoring and Evaluation and Implementation of Cooperative MCS tools

    TCC has previously identified that a priority task is the continued development of training resources and learning aids for the IMS, and the Secretariat has been tasked to explore the development of training videos.  Recent upgrades of key IT-related systems and associated guidelines and training resources have focused on supporting CCMs reporting. 

    The Secretariat will provide an update on the TCC19 recommendation that the Secretariat update and maintain the Annual Reporting guidance (Annex 2 of WCPFC-TCC19-2023-19 Resources to assist CCM reporting and implementation of obligations) to provide CCMs clarity on their reporting requirements for further discussion at future TCC meetings.  TCC20 is to consider relevant information and updates and make recommendations to the Commission.

    TCC20 will also consider and provide advice about additional support aids (eg guidelines, training resources and learning aids, and update of documentation)  that the Secretariat should explore to better support CCMs implementation of cooperative MCS activities.  


  • 13. Special Requirements of Developing States
    • 13.1 Capacity Assistance Needs

      Consideration of the Special Requirements of Developing States pursuant to Part VIII of the Convention is a standing agenda item on the provisional agenda (see Rule 2(h) of the WCPFC Rules of Procedure). 

      The TCC Workplan 2022-2024 contains a list of possible areas of support to build capacity of SIDS: TCC20 will consider relevant information and make recommendations to the Commission.

      TCC20 will review requests for capacity development assistance from developing states and territories, that have been identified through annual reporting and the CMS, for inclusion into the WCPFC Strategic Investment Plan.

    • 13.2 Implementation of CMM 2013-06

      TCC is tasked, as a standing agenda item relating to the Special Requirements of Developing States, to review and assess the Commission’s implementation of, and compliance with, CMM 2013-06 Conservation and Management Measure on the criteria for the consideration of conservation and management proposals for the previous calendar year (WCPFC20 Summary Report, paragraph 754 (a)). 

  • 14. Administrative Matters
    • 14.1 WCPFC Information and Network Security Framework

      At WCPFC19, the Commission approved the TCC18 recommendations to expand the annual VMS Security Audit, to include a more dynamic and continual assessment of the WCPFC information management systems and annual penetration testing of the WCPFC information management systems.  In 2023, TCC19 noted the Secretariat's plans to continue the ongoing, expanded security review work, which includes completing work on the development of an IT Systems Risk Register and conduct of routine penetration testing, and efforts to continue to improve the Secretariat's IT security score.  Updates will be provided by the Secretariat on the status of the WCPFC’s Information and Network Security Framework and provide advice and recommendations related to relevant workplan and resourcing requirements to facilitate the work of the Secretariat.

    • 14.2 Required resources

      TCC20 is invited to discuss and provide advice and recommendations to FAC18 and the Commission on the resources required to support TCC20 outcomes, including tasks set out in the TCC Workplan for 2025 and subsequent years, taking into consideration the views of the Secretariat.

    • 14.3 Election of Officers

      TCC20 will recommend a Technical and Compliance Committee Chair and Vice-Chair for election at WCPFC21. The TCC Chair and TCC Vice-Chair shall hold office for two years and shall be eligible for re-election.

    • 14.4 Next Meeting

      TCC20 is invited to recommend that TCC21 be held on Wednesday 27th September – Tuesday 3rd October 2025, and to confirm the venue is in Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia.


  • 15. Other matters for TCC advice from the TCC20 ODF

    This agenda item is intended to provide a limited opportunity for TCC20 to consider outcomes on other topics from the TCC20 online discussion forum (ODF). TCC20 may also consider, as appropriate, advice and recommendations related to NC20, SC20 and SMD-02 outcomes.

  • 16. Clearance of TCC20 Recommendations

    TCC20 will adopt an Outcomes Document that reflects decisions and recommendations with the full summary report to be cleared intersessionally.

  • 17. Close of Meeting

    Members and the Chair may wish to provide closing remarks, after which the Chair will close the meeting.