Over 58 million people are engaged in the primary sector of capture fisheries and aquaculture. Of these, approximately 37 percent are engaged full time, 23 percent part time, and the remainder either occasional fishers or of unspecified status. Over 15 million are working full-time on board fishing vessels.

Fishing is one of the most challenging and hazardous occupations ILO is working to ensure decent work for all fishers. The ILO’s international labour standard concerned specifically with work on board fishing vessels is the Work in Fishing Convention, 2007 (No. 188). This Convention demonstrates the renewed commitment by the ILO to ensure decent work in fishing. It aims to ensure decent conditions of work with regard to minimum requirements for work on board; conditions of service; accommodation and food; occupational safety and health protection; medical care and social security. A major effort is underway in the ILO to achieve widespread ratification and implementation of the Convention. Convention No. 188 is a valuable tool for addressing issues concerning migrant fisher and eliminating forced labour and child labour in the fishing sector.

This site provides information on work undertaken by the ILO, as well as work carried out jointly with other United Nations system specialized agencies.


  1. Sectoral Meeting

    Tripartite Meeting on issues relating to Migrant Fishers

    The purpose of the meeting was to discuss issues relating to migrant fishers as part of the follow-up to the Resolution concerning the promotion of welfare for fishers adopted at the 96th Session (2007) of the International Labour Conference.

  1. Report

    Good Labour Practices Programme Report

    The ship to Shore Rights Project is charged with a revision and expansion of the 2012 Good Labour Practices Programme (GLP) which taught workplace labour standards in the Thai shrimp-peeling industry.

  2. Brochure

    Providing decent employment for Pacific fishers

  3. Video

    Ensuring decent work for fishers: ILO's Work in Fishing Convention, 2007 (N° 188)

  4. Standards

  5. Guidelines

  6. Training material

  7. Resources