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Hawaii Longline Fishery sees revenue decline

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Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — A report prepared for the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council and summarized for local media, highlights a nearly 8% decline in revenue for the Hawai‘i longline fishery due to a drop in average fish prices at the first point of landing in Honolulu Harbor.

The 2023 Stock Assessment and Fishery Evaluation Report, which monitors fish catch and revenue, was presented to scientists and advisors of the Council’s 152nd Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) meeting from June 11-13, 2024, for advice on shaping the future of fisheries management in the Western Pacific Region.

The report indicates that while the Hawaii longline fishery landed slightly more fish in 2023, greater yields did not lead to higher revenue. Industry representatives confirmed better catch rates towards the end of 2023, but overall it was a very tough year for the fleet. It was further noted that the volume and price of subsidized foreign imports, coupled with all-time high operational costs, are causing severe economic impacts on the fleet, which is the State’s largest food producer.

The Hawaii longline fleet consists of 150 U.S.-flagged vessels operating out of Honolulu Harbor. The SSC discussed this information to provide scientific advice on management of this fishery.


Electronic monitoring is in the planning stages for tracking protected species interactions with the Hawaii longline fisheries. SSC discussions will address delays due to funding shortfalls, the reduction in human observer coverage and potential pathways for phasing in electronic monitoring to meet regulatory obligations.

The SSC also advises the Council on catch limits for the main Hawaiian Islands deep-seven bottomfish fishery. The 2023 report showed recent bottomfish catch has been well-below current limits, and the fishery is neither overfished nor experiencing overfishing. A new stock assessment will help the SSC quantify the risk of overfishing and uncertainty.

A recent national focus on climate change and environmental justice requires the Council to look at ways to manage fisheries for resiliency. To support this effort, the SSC will review revisions and suggestions from various advisory groups on research priorities that promote climate change resiliency, equity and environmental justice, and regulatory efficiency in fisheries management.

The SSC meeting is open for both in-person and remote participation via web conference. Attendees can access the full agenda, background documents and instructions for connecting to the meeting and providing oral public comments at

Recommendations made by the SSC on these and other matters will be considered by the Council when it meets June 24-26 at the Ala Moana Hotel, Hibiscus Ballroom in Honolulu.