Director-General Okonjo-Iweala said: “We are deeply grateful for Germany's donation and trust in the WTO as a partner working to improve the health of our ocean, reflecting Germany's long-standing commitment to environmental sustainability. Germany's support for the Fisheries Fund will be instrumental in our ability to assist developing and LDC members to fulfil their commitments under the Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies. This support, which reflects Germany's long-standing commitment to environmental sustainability, will enhance our collective global efforts, across all levels of development, to improve and safeguard the sustainability of the ocean for the benefit of fishers, workers, consumers, and future generations.”

Mr Meyer said: “Preserving fish stocks and other seafood is vital both as a key to healthy diets and livelihoods of millions of people worldwide as well as for our planet's biodiversity. The abolishment of harmful fisheries subsidies as foreseen under the new WTO Fisheries Subsidies Agreement is a crucial step towards this end. For the Agreement to become effective, countries need to adapt their legal framework as well as put in place practical oversight and implementation. Germany will support countries on this path to sustainable fishing by actively engaging in the new WTO Fisheries Trust Fund.”

Because the new Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies will involve adjustments and enhancements to WTO members' legislative and administrative frameworks, transparency and notification requirements, and fisheries management policies and practices, Article 7 of the Agreement provides for the creation of a funding mechanism to provide targeted technical assistance and capacity building to help developing and least-developed country members with implementation.

The Fund is operated by the WTO Secretariat with specialized partner organizations, namely the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, the International Fund for Agricultural Development, and the World Bank Group, which bring to bear relevant expertise.

More information on the Fund, which became operational on 8 November, is available here.

Including the most recent first tranche of the donation, Germany's total contribution to the various WTO trust funds from 2000 to 2023 is CHF 35,165,244 (approximately EUR  35,664,000). In particular, Germany had contributed to another trust fund that supported LDCs participating in the fisheries subsidies negotiations in Geneva.



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