SIOFA - Fisheries Agreement for the South Indian Ocean


Direção-Geral de Recursos Naturais, Segurança e Serviços Marítimos
Avenida Brasília
1449-030 Lisboa Portugal
Phone: +351 213 035 700
Fax: +351 213 035 702

Southern Indian Ocean Fisheries Agreement (SIOFA/APSOI)
Bâtiment B
Parc de la Providence
97489 Saint-Denis Cedex
La Réunion
Phone: +262 692 37 63 95


Image (Area and subarea)



The Plenipotentiary Conference for Adoption of the Southern Indian Ocean Fisheries Agreement, adopted on 7 July 2006, the Southern Indian Ocean Fisheries Agreement (SIOFA).

In accordance with article 24, the Agreement shall enter into force 90 days after the date of receipt by the Depositary of the fourth instrument of ratification, acceptance or approval, two of which must be deposited by coastal States in the area. The Agreement entered into force on 21 June 2012.

SIOFA is not a Regional Fisheries Organization, but rather a Regional Fisheries Agreement, therefore it does not have a Permanent Secretariat. Its objective is to ensure the long-term conservation and sustainable use of fisheries resources, other than tunas, in areas outside national jurisdictions scope through concrete actions such as:

  • creation of effective mechanisms to control fishing in the SIOFA area
  • drawing up annual reports on fishing operations, including the quantities caught and rejected
  • carrying out inspections of ships entering ports of the Contracting Parties to verify compliance with the SIOFA rules.

Other joint actions include regular studies of the state of fish stocks as well as the impact of fisheries on the environment.

The main body of SIOFA is the Meeting of the Parties which meets at least once a year. Contracting Parties may also decide to hold special meetings whenever deemed as necessary.

In addition to this body, the Agreement includes the following subsidiary bodies:

  • The Standing Scientific Committee, which shall meet at least once a year, preferably before the Conference of the Parties
  • The Compliance Committee, which shall meet in conjunction with the Meeting of the Parties, with the purpose of informing, advising and making recommendations.

The Meeting of the Parties may also decide to set up special or permanent committees to study and report on issues related with the implementation of the objectives of the agreement and to promote working groups to study and make recommendations on specific issues.

Eligibility conditions

  • Hold a valid fishing license in accordance with Article 6 of the Control Regulation (Regulation 1224/2009)
  • Implementation of the relevant IMO vessel identification system, if required under Unions law
  • The fishing vessel is not on a IUU vessels list adopted by any RFMO and / or the Union under the IUU Regulation
  • The flag Member State has fishing opportunities under the fisheries agreement in question
  • Have a vessels satellite monitoring system (VMS) installed and operational
  • Have a system for the electronic filling and transmission of fishing logbook data installed and operational.


The SIOFA Agreement covers fish, molluscs, crustaceans and other sedentary species in the area covered by the Agreement, excluding large migrators (Annex I of UNCLOS) and sedentary species covered by Article 77 of the UNCLOS Convention.



SIOFA agreement

SIOFA Conservation and Management Measures