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The short-run viability of fishing vessels: the case of the French Norway lobster fishery in the Biscay Bay

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  • The French Norway lobster (Nephrops norvegicus) fishery situated in the Biscay Bay is composed by about 250 costal trawlers. These boats are registered in harbours located in South Brittany (Le Guilvinec, Lorient, Concarneau) and in the Vendée (Sables d'Olonnes, La Cotinière). The main particularity of the fishery is that lobsters are landed alive, which constitutes a specific product in the Norway lobster market. For several years, ICES members have claimed for the necessity of strongly reducing effort and immature catches for this specie (and in fact for the most important species of the area). In 2001, the ACFM recommendation was a 40% reduction of the allowed TAC for the Biscay Bay fishery. A 20% reduction was finally adopted by the Ministry Council but won't be applied by fishermen according to their public statements. As hake constitutes an important bycatch for these boats, the Hake Recovery Plan has also some repercussions on the fishery (in terms of additional technical measures) This paper presents the first results of a bioeconomic model of the French lobster fishery. The aim of this model is to understand the short-run viability of the fishing vessels implied in this fishery and to evaluate the resilience of the whole fishery to quick regular changes, such as recovery plan or important quota reductions.
  • Keywords: Theoretical and Empirical Bio-Economic Modelling, Fisheries Economics
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  • Metz, Sebastien. 2002. The short-run viability of fishing vessels: the case of the French Norway lobster fishery in the Biscay Bay. In: Proceedings of the Eleventh Biennial Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade, August 19-22, 2002, Wellington, New Zealand: Fisheries in the Global Economy. Compiled by Ann L. Shriver. International Institute of Fisheries Economics & Trade, Corvallis, Oregon, USA, 2002. CD ROM.
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