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A value-based individual transferable quota scheme - a preliminary examination of its suitability as a fisheries management technique

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  • An ITQ scheme has been shown to create a quota induced incentive for discarding of fish in excess of what is socially optimal. This finding is corroborated by empirical evidence in several ITQ managed fisheries. The incentive for discarding, over and above those expected in an unmanaged or input controlled fishery, may arise because of two reasons: firstly, in the case of a single species fishery, it can be advantageous to substitute low priced with high priced size classes of fish thereby increasing the value of a given quota; secondly, where transaction costs in quota trading are high, species may be discarded for which no quota is held or for which catches have surmounted current quota holdings. The proposed approach of assigning value based individual transferable quotas (VITQs) would remove the quota induced incentive for high grading, and can reduce costs of quota trading. Furthermore, in the case of multi species fisheries, VITQs may allow fishermen to respond with greater flexibility to changes in species abundances than under an ITQ system, and may confer greater economic stability. A value based individual quota would assign a maximum landed value of the catch, which could be taken in a certain period of time (e.g. year). The catch would be composed of a basket of pre determined species or would need to be taken from one or several assigned fishing zones areas, or a combination of both. The proposed system may depict a compensatory mechanism against excessive targeting of any one single species, but if this could result in a desirable exploitation, pattern would depend on growth rates catchability coefficients and price elasticities of the various species in the basket or fishing zone.
  • KEYWORDS: Fishery management, Individual transferable quotas
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  • Willmann, Rolf. 1996. A value-based individual transferable quota scheme - a preliminary examination of its suitability as a fisheries management technique. In: Proceedings of the Eighth International Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade, July 1-4, 1996, Marrakech, Morocco. Compiled by Ann L. Shriver. International Institute of Fisheries Economics & Trade, Corvallis, Oregon, USA, 2002. CD ROM.
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