The parties to the agreement will meet at least every two years to review progress in implementation and scientific information developed as part of a joint scientific research and monitoring programme. This agreement provides a proactive and precautionary approach to future deep-sea fishing activities in the central Arctic Ocean. All parties are committed to a joint scientific research and monitoring program. This will contribute to a better understanding of Arctic Ocean ecosystems and a better understanding of Arctic fish stocks. By preventing commercial fishing in the absence of this information, this agreement increases the likelihood that any future commercial fishing activity in this area will be sustainable. “the only high-seas portion of the central Arctic Ocean surrounded by waters in which Canada, the Kingdom of Denmark exercise fishing jurisdiction over Greenland, the Kingdom of Norway, the Russian Federation and the United States of America” (Article 1, point a), see map). “the United States, to engage in international talks and take the necessary steps with other nations to negotiate an agreement on the management of migratory and cross-border fish stocks in the Arctic Ocean. We are not aware of a direct (legal or political) link between CAOFA and the WTO negotiations on fisheries subsidies. The CAOFA contains no provisions and no provisions for grants.
That was a concern of the Arctic coastal states. Thus, they decided to prevent commercial fishing until better scientific knowledge was available and to involve other countries with high-water fishing capacity. The result was the international agreement for the prevention of unregulated deep-sea fishing in the Central Arctic Ocean, signed in 2018 by Canada, Iceland, the Kingdom of Denmark, Norway, the United States and the Russian Federation, as well as China, Japan, South Korea and the European Union. It should be remembered that, in the case of a competent ORGP/A, States operating straddling or large migratory stocks on the high seas are either members of this ORGP/A or must apply their conservation and management measures (Article 8, paragraph 3, UNFSA). Otherwise, the State concerned is prohibited from fishing the affected stocks (Article 8, paragraph 4, unFSA). As a result of these obligations, there is also a right to join an ORGP/A where a “real interest in the fisheries concerned” can be demonstrated – and this right must be reflected in the existence (and application) of non-discriminatory provisions relating to the participation of new entrants in the relevant PMO. Although the preamble to the CAOFA states that it is “premature, in the present circumstances, to create an additional regional or sub-regional organization or arrangement for fisheries management,” the scope of responsibilities for the definition of conservation and management measures covered by Article 5, paragraph 1, d) (for exploratory fisheries) and Article 5, paragraph 1, paragraph c) 2) (for commercial fishing) suggests: that the CAOFA itself is either an RFMA within the meaning of Article 1, paragraph 1, point d), UNFSA or UNFSA, at least once the mechanism of Article 5, paragraph 1, paragraph c) (c) is triggered.