June 21, 2022

Whitehouse Applauds News of International Fisheries Agreement to Begin Leveling Playing Field for Domestic Industry

Harmful subsidies in some countries lead to overfishing and IUU fishing

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) today applauded news from the World Trade Organization’s Ministerial Conference that the United States Trade Representative, Ambassador Katherine Tai, has secured an international agreement that will help preserve fish stocks and take a step toward leveling the playing field for the domestic fishing industry by curbing harmful subsidies abroad.

“This agreement was two decades in the making, and the Biden administration showed real leadership in bringing it home,” said Whitehouse.  “There’s a lot of work left to do to crack down on illegal fishing practices that pose a threat to our local fishing industry and we are going to keep pushing forward.”

Last week, Whitehouse and Dan Sullivan (R-AK) led a bipartisan group of their colleagues in calling on the United States Trade Representative to seek a meaningful international agreement to curb harmful fisheries subsidies.

Harmful subsidies paid by other nations like China and Russia put all other fishing fleets and their harvests at a competitive disadvantage.  This disadvantages not only Americans, but also the people of developing countries,” the Senators wrote last Friday.

Whitehouse co-founded the bipartisan Senator Oceans Caucus along with Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK).  The Caucus works to find common ground in protecting oceans and coasts. Thanks to the Caucus’s leadership, Congress has taken steps to guard against illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing, including ratifying a series of IUU fishing treaties with partner nations and passing implementing legislation to bring those treaties into effect.

Meaghan McCabe, (401) 453-5294

Press Contact

Meaghan McCabe, (202) 224-2921