In the late 1980s and early 1990s a number of factors and events coalesced to encourage the international community to re-examine high seas fisheries issues. The need to enhance the effectiveness of regional fisheries organizations led to the development of the 1995 United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement, dealing with straddling and highly migratory stocks. Both Canada and Australia played a significant role in the development of this agreement. While having much in common, each state had different interests and concerns. Canada's attention was focused on the problem of straddling stocks, while Australia's interests have been primarily, though not exclusively, directed at highly migratory species. This paper analyses Australian and Canadian practices in relation to regional fisheries organizations, with a particular emphasis on the United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement.