The Cape Town Agreement (CTA) was adopted by the International Conference on the Safety of Fishing Vessels, held from 9 to 11 October 2012 in Cape Town, South Africa, under the auspices of the International Maritime Organization (IMO). The Agreement updates some of the provisions of the Torremolinos Protocol of 1993 and of the International Convention for the Safety of Fishing Vessels, 1977, which never entered into force. The overall objective of the CTA is to ensure the safety of fishing vessels and their crew (including fisheries observers) by setting out minimum global standards for the design, construction, equipment and inspections of fishing vessels. The CTA closely mirrors the provisions of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), which covers uniquely the merchant shipping sector.
In order to enhance awareness about the Cape Town Agreement provisions the Cape Town Agreement Best Practices Information Forum (Fishing Safety Forum) has been established.
The aim of the Fishing Safety Forum is to raise awareness of the Cape Town Agreement provisions amongst all those involved in or potentially affected by fishing activity and to facilitate the exchange of information and best practices on CTA implementation among Forum participants.
Forum participation is open to all IMO Member States and IMO affiliates as well as any widely-recognized professional organization dedicated to improving safe and environmentally sound fishing operations.
The principal product of the Fishing Safety Forum is a Web portal which provides links to authoritative information that are indispensable to the effective implementation of and compliance with the CTA. Organized by the chapters of the CTA, the Web portal links to information submitted by Forum Participants and vetted according to agreed criteria by the Forum’s Steering Committee, In addition, the Web portal contains links to information provided by administrations of IMO Member States in respect of implementation of CTA provisions in their jurisdiction.