NOAA Fisheries’ Office of International Affairs and Seafood Inspection is now the Office of International Affairs, Trade, and Commerce. It remains under the leadership of Director Alexa Cole. This new name integrates the full scope of office functions and more thoroughly reflects the types of work the office carries out. The name also more accurately and comprehensively reflects the important work of the Seafood Inspection Program in support of trade and commerce.
The office’s responsibilities and efforts have expanded and evolved over the years. The proposed changes address the increasing demands related to:
- Trade and commerce policy and analysis
- Implementation of new and expanding statutory mandates
- Seafood trade
- Information technology modernization
The restructuring aligns the trade functions in NOAA Fisheries to better support the U.S. seafood industry, promote exports, improve seafood competitiveness, and combat IUU fishing. It establishes the Trade and Commerce Division with two new branches: trade monitoring, and trade and commerce policy. It also combines all of NOAA Fisheries’ trade monitoring functions under one office to realize functional and operational efficiencies. This means that the Office of International Affairs, Trade, and Commerce now oversees: