Proceedings of the Eighteenth Biennial Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade, held July 11-15, 2016 at Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Center (AECC), Aberdeen, Scotland, UK.
Suggested Bibliographic Reference: Challenging New Frontiers in the Global Seafood Sector: Proceedings of the Eighteenth Biennial Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade, July 11-15, 2016. Compiled by Stefani J. Evers and Ann L. Shriver. International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade (IIFET), Corvallis, 2016.
The Australian federal fisheries policy identifies maximising net economic returns as the primary objective of fisheries management. This has largely been interpreted as maximising the net economic yield (MEY) in fisheries. For multispecies fisheries, this has been based on maximising the net present value of total profit in the fishery over all stocks. More recently, the influence of reducing yields to achieve MEY on prices and the transfer of consumer surplus to producers has been raised as a potential issue. Achieving fishery MEY may result in a reduction in net economic returns in a broader sense if the loss to consumers exceeds the gain to the industry. The transfer of consumer surplus to producers is also considered undesirable. Similarly, the disutility associated with bycatch in fisheries may also affect our interpretation of “optimal” yields if non-monetary values are assigned. These externalities are generally not considered in determining MEY. In this paper, we develop a generic multispecies bioeconomic model that is used to estimate the impact on target fishing mortality rates of broadening the consideration of net economic returns to include also changes in consumer surplus and inclusion of non-market values associated with bycatch. The model is run stochastically while maximising profit as before but varying the number of species caught, their biological characteristics and prices, fishing costs, price flexibilities, bycatch rates and values. The impact of including these factors on target fishing mortality rates is then explored through meta-analysis of the results.