American Samoa Longline Limited Entry Permit
Highly Migratory Species
3 years after date of issuance
U.S. EEZ around American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and U.S. Pacific Remote Island Areas.
An American Samoa longline permit allows a vessel to fish with pelagic longline gear and to transship longline-caught fish within the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ, generally beyond 3 miles from shore) around American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the U.S. Pacific Remote Island Areas. The permit also allows the vessel to land catch at ports in these areas. The permit does not allow longline fishing within the EEZ around Hawaii or landing catch in Hawaii.
There is a maximum of 60 American Samoa longline permits. Permits are distributed between Small (less than 50 ft) and Large (50 ft or longer) vessel size classes. A permit must be held by a U.S. citizen, national, company, partnership, or corporation.
A permit may be renewed if the permit holder meets the minimum harvest requirement and the vessel owner has a current Protected Species Workshop certificate. A Small vessel must land at least 500 lb of longline caught pelagic fish in American Samoa within 3 years to maintain the permit. A Large vessel must land 5,000 lb within 3 years.
A transferred permit expires on the same date as the original permit, and the minimum harvest amount for renewal is pro-rated over the remaining period of the permit. A renewed or additional permit is valid for three years from the date of issuance.
- Permits and Authorizations:
- Vessel must carry a valid American Samoa longline permit registered to the vessel on board the vessel.
- Vessel must carry a valid High Seas Fishing Compliance Act permit, and a Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission Area Endorsement on board the vessel if fishing in international waters.
- Vessel must carry a valid Marine Mammal Authorization Program (MMAP) certificate on board the vessel.
- Vessel operator must have a valid Protected Species Workshop certificate on board the vessel.
- Monitoring. A Large vessel must carry an operational vessel monitoring system (VMS) unit supplied and installed by the NOAA Office of Law Enforcement.
- Observer. A vessel 40 feet or longer must notify the NOAA Fisheries Observer Program 72 hours before departure on a trip and declare whether trip type is deep-set (targeting tunas) or shallow-set (targeting swordfish), and carry a NOAA Fisheries observer if directed to do so by NOAA Fisheries.
- A Small vessel must maintain accurate records of catch, effort, and other data on the paper Pacific Islands Pelagic Fisheries Longline Fishing Logbook and submit logbooks to NOAA Fisheries within 72 hours of returning to port.
- A Large vessel must maintain accurate records using a NOAA Fisheries-certified electronic logbook and submit information within 24 hours after the end of each fishing day. If there is a technology malfunction, the vessel must submit completed electronic and/or paper logbook information to NOAA within 72 hours of returning to port.
What You Will Need
High Seas Fishing Compliance Act Permit
Required for any U.S. vessel fishing in international waters. Regulations for this permit requirement are found at Code of Federal Regulations, Part 300.
Western and Central Pacific Commission Area Endorsement
Required for any U.S. vessel used for commercial fishing for highly migratory species on the high seas in the WCPFC Area. Vessels must have on board a valid High Seas Fishing Compliance Act Permit that has a valid WCPFC Area Endorsement.
Marine Mammal Authorization Program (MMAP) Certificate
Required on board the vessel when fishing. Permit holders do not have to apply for the MMAP Certificate—the NOAA Fisheries Pacific Islands Regional Office issues the MMAP Certificate to each vessel registered to an American Samoa longline permit because the fishery is a Category II fishery under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. Replacement certificates may be downloaded here.
Protected Species Workshop Certificate
Required on board the vessel when fishing. Every year, longline vessel owners and operators must attend and be certified for completion of a workshop conducted by NOAA Fisheries on interaction mitigation techniques for sea turtles, seabirds, and other protected species. Visit the Protected Species Workshop page for more information.