Indian Ocean tuna - purse seine (SIOTI)

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The Sustainable Indian Ocean Tuna Initiative (SIOTI) has been jointly established by key governments in the region, major tuna processors, producer organisations and their fishing vessels, with the support of WWF. This FIP is a multi-stakeholder effort, and it’s goal is to support improvement in the management of tuna fisheries in the Indian Ocean so that in the future, consumers can be assured that the purse-seine tuna they purchase has been harvested sustainably. The ultimate aim is to meet the highest standards of sustainable fishing, such as the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standard.

Target species: this FIP will consider the following three pelagic tuna species as the target species: skipjack tuna (Katsuwonus pelamis), yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares) and bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus)

Fishing methods: this FIP will include the use of purse seines by large (e.g. >60 m) specialist purse seine vessels. Sets by these vessels can be made in two different ways: 1. Free-schools: vessels seek large schools of tuna which are usually fished during daylight. 2. Associated sets: vessels that utilise the natural aggregation of tuna around floating objects to harvest fish. 

Fishing area: the fishing area is the Indian Ocean under the jurisdiction of the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission e.g. FAO Statistical Areas 51 and 57.

Fishing fleet: the fishing fleet currently numbers around forty vessels fishing for, or on behalf of, the FIP participants. The exact nature of the fleet will be clarified as the FIP partnership evolves, and will be assessed in detail during FIP action planning. However, it is recognised that the fishing fleet might  change over time if the FIP partnership is enlarged or decreased.

Note: Currently, can only track MSC Performance Indicator (PI) Scores for one target species at a time. In the case of this FIP, which encompasses three different types of tuna, PIs will be tracked for the species that is most threatened within the fishery - yellowfin tuna.


FIP Description 

The Sustainable Indian Ocean Tuna Initiative (SIOTI) has been jointly established by key governments in the region, major tuna processors, producer organisations and their fishing vessels, with the support of WWF.

FIP Objective(s) 
  • To form a collaboration between governments, industry and fleets to bring about improvements in the fishery.
  • To address the shortfalls in the stock health, ecosystem health and management of the fishery by meeting actions described by the Improvement Performance Goals (IPGs).
  • To improve the fishery to a point at which it can undergo (and pass) full assessment by the MSC by the end of March 2022.
FIP Type 
FIP Stage 
Stage 4: Improvements in Fishing Practices or Fishery Management
Start and Projected End Dates
April 2017
March 2022
Next Progress Report Due 
Monday, January 31, 2022
Common Name 
Yellowfin Tuna
Scientific Name
Thunnus albacares
Common Name 
Skipjack Tuna
Scientific Name
Katsuwonus pelamis
Common Name 
Bigeye Tuna
Scientific Name
Thunnus obesus
Gear Type 
Purse Seine
FAO Major Fishing Area
Area 51 (Indian Ocean, Western)
Area 57 (Indian Ocean, Eastern)
Exclusive Economic Zones
Comoros (the)
Tanzania, United Republic of
Geographic Scope 
Including overseas territories of France in the Indian Ocean
Country Flag of Vessel 
Country Flag of Vessel 
Country Flag of Vessel 
Country Flag of Vessel 
Country Flag of Vessel 
Regional Fisheries Management Organization
Estimated Total FIP Landings 
160,000 metric tons
Estimated Total Fishery Landings 
370,000 metric tons

FIP at a Glance

7% 46% 46%
April 01, 2017
21% 43% 36%
Progress Rating

A - Advanced Progress
Reserved for comprehensive FIPs that have a Stage 4 or 5 result within the past 12 months.

B - Good Progress
A FIP that has achieved a Stage 4 or 5 in more than 12 months AND Stage 3 activity in the last year; OR a basic FIP that has achieved Stage 4 or 5 achievements within the past 12 months.

C - Some Recent Progress
A FIP that has achieved a Stage 4 or 5 result in more than 12 (but less than 24) months but has not generated a Stage 3 result within the past 12 months OR a FIP younger than a year that has never achieved a Stage 4 or 5 result but has completed a Stage 3 activity.

D - Some Past Progress
A FIP for which the most recent publicly reported Stage 4 or 5 result is more than 24 (but less than 30) months.

E - Negligible Progress
A FIP older than a year that has not reported a Stage 4 or 5 result in more than 30 month (but less than 36) months; OR a FIP younger than 1 year that has not reported a Stage 3 activity.

The ratings are currently derived by SFP from publicly available data on FIP websites, including, and are determined using the following methodology: View PDF
A Advanced Progress
Actions Complete

This pie chart represents completed environmental actions. Non-completed environmental actions may contain completed sub-tasks that are not illustrated here. For more information on environmental action progress visit the Actions Progress tab.

  • Complete
  • Incomplete
Next Update Due FisheryProgress requires a FIP to provide update reports every six months, and two missed reports will render the FIP inactive. If a report is overdue, this date will appear red.
Jan 2022
Target End Date
Mar 2022

FIP Leads

Organization Name 
Thai Union
Organization Type 
Primary Contact 
Dr Jan Robinson
FIP Identification Number The FIP Identification Number is automatically generated by FisheryProgress when a FIP profile is created. While the number itself is not meaningful, they are used by NGOs, academia, and industry to refer to FIPs in a consistent way.