WTO Fisheries Funding Mechanism

As part of the WTO Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies adopted at the WTO's 12th Ministerial Conference in 2022, members endorsed the establishment of a new funding mechanism, in cooperation with relevant international organizations, to accept voluntary contributions to provide developing and least developed country (LDC) members with targeted technical assistance and capacity building for the purpose of implementing the disciplines under the Agreement.




At the 12th Ministerial Conference, held on 12-17 June 2022 in Geneva, WTO members forged an historic Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies, which sets new rules to curb harmful subsidies and protect global fish stocks in a manner that also recognizes the needs of fishers in developing and least-developed countries (LDCs). The Agreement will enter into force upon acceptance of its legal instrument by two-thirds of the membership.

Article 7 of the Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies provides for the creation of the WTO Fisheries Funding Mechanism for targeted technical assistance and capacity building to help developing and least-developed country members implement the Agreement. The Fund became operational and ready to accept donations as of 8 November 2022 following the WTO Secretariat's submission of its notification outlining how the Fund will work and its estimated budget to the Committee on Budget, Finance and Administration.

Objectives of the Fund

The main objectives of the Fund are to:

  • provide technical assistance in support of members' efforts to bring their subsidy measures into conformity with WTO rules, including necessary legislative and regulatory amendments, and preparation and submission of WTO notifications, as per the requirements of the new Agreement.
  • coordinate with partner organizations supporting beneficiary members' establishment of the administrative links between the agencies responsible for subsidies and fisheries, respectively. This approach will ensure the integration of the fisheries sustainability elements into the subsidies policies.
  • assist beneficiary members to strengthen their fisheries management to meet the specific requirements of the new Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies through collaboration with partner organizations such as the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), and the World Bank.

Operation of the Fund

The Fund is operated by the WTO with partner organizations the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, the World Bank Group, and the International Fund for Agricultural Development, to tap relevant expertise in a way that creates synergies and fills gaps, and avoids duplication. Once the start-up phase is completed, and subject to availability of funds, the Fund will be able to start accepting applications for assistance.  

WTO documents search on the Fisheries Funding Mechanism

Search Documents Online
These links open a new window: allow a moment for the results to appear.

> help with downloading these documents

  • Search results for “Fisheries Funding Mechanism”   > search

You can perform more sophisticated searches from the Documents Online search facility by defining multiple search criteria such as document symbol (i.e. code number), full text search or document date.



The WTO Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies: What it does and what comes next


Problems viewing this page? If so, please contact [email protected] giving details of the operating system and web browser you are using.