International Cooperation

ABNJ Deep Seas Project: Bottom Fisheries in Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction

Fishing with bottom-contact gear in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ) occurs on continental shelves, slopes or isolated oceanic topographic structures such as seamounts, ridge systems and banks. FAO estimates that the total global catch in 2014 caught by bottom-contact fishing gear in ABNJ was around 150 000 tonnes (excluding the Mediterranean), comprising of about 50 species in reported catches, and involved less than 11 flag States. Flag States, regional fisheries management organizations or arrangements (RFMO/As) and other multi-lateral bodies with a fisheries management mandate are managing these bottom fisheries in the ABNJ. Currently, there are eight of these bodies, three of which were created in the last five years.

For more information about ABNJ, see

The Fisheries Resources Monitoring System (FIRMS) is a partnership of intergovernmental fisheries organizations that share a wide range of high-quality information on the global monitoring and management of marine fishery resources. FIRMS aims to provide decision-makers with the best and most authoritative informatioN possible in order to develop effective fisheries policies in accordance with the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries.

Download the FIRMS brochure for more information

FIRMS website

NAFO PotEntial VulneRable Marine Ecosystems-Impacts
of Deep-sea Fisheries

The NERIEDA expedition was a multidisciplinary research of the sensitive habitats and fishing activities as well as analysis of the fishing resources for the study and protection of the vulnerable ecosystems.

The surveys took place in 2009 and 2010.

Download more information here: 

Project Information

Surveys and Sampling Tools

Sediment Samples give insight into historical distribution of sponges in the NRA

Benthic Surveys using Underwater Cameras

Contact us

Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization
2 Morris Drive, Suite 100
(Burnside Industrial Park)
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
Canada B3B 1K8

Tel: +1 902 468-5590
Fax: +1 902 468-5538


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