It was established by the International Convention on the Conservation and Management of Large Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (WCPF Agreement), which came into force on 19 June 2004.  The WCPF Convention is the second regional fisheries management agreement negotiated since the conclusion of the UN fisheries agreement in 1995. After four years of complex negotiations between the Western and Central Pacific coastal states and the national fishing states, the Convention on the Conservation and Management of Large Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean was opened for signature on September 5, 2000 in Honolulu. The agreement is one of the first regional fisheries agreements adopted since the conclusion of the UN Fisheries Resources Agreement in 1995. Membership of the Commission is open to states that participated in the negotiations on the 2004 Convention. Parties to the agreement may, by consensus, invite states or regional economic integration organizations that wish to fish for large migratory fish stocks in the Western and Central Pacific to join the convention. This approach limits access and emphasizes that the membership initiative is the responsibility of existing parties and not new candidates.  Note that not all of these species are native to the Pacific Ocean and that Schedule I of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea also contains marine mammals (dolphins and whales). Commission decisions are generally taken by mutual agreement, but the WCPFC convention also provides for a bicameral voting mechanism, with the Member States of the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) constituting a chamber. The Commission has three formal subsidiary bodies: the Scientific Committee (SC), which normally meets in early August; Committee of the North (NC), which usually meets in early September; Technical and Compliance Committee (CTT), which usually meets at the end of September. Final Act of the High-Level Multilateral Conference on the Conservation and Management of Large Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific (26.85 KB) The status of stocks under the commission`s supervision is summarized informally in the ISF`s status of stocks report.
 In December 2014, Feleti Teo was appointed Executive Director of the Commission at the 11th regular session of the WCPFC in Apia, Samoa. Teo was previously Attorney General of Tuvalu, Director General of the Forum Fisheries Agency, Deputy Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum and Current Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum in 2008.  The Commission supports three subsidiary bodies; the scientific committee, the technical committee, the compliance committee and the northern committee, which meet once a year. The meetings of the subsidiary bodies are followed by a full meeting of the Commission. The Commission`s work is supported by a financial and management committee. Participating non-member states: Belize, Democratic People`s Republic of Korea, Ecuador, El Salvador, Mexico, Senegal, St. Christopher and Nevis, Panama, Thailand, Vietnam. In accordance with Article 35, paragraph 1, the agreement remains open to the accession of The States covered by Article 34, paragraph 1, and any entity covered by Article 305, paragraph 1, paragraph (c) and (e) of the United Nations Convention, which is in the territory of the Agreement.