From drain to gain in capture fisheries rents: a synthesis study, food and agriculture organization of the UN

Gordon Munro

Research output: Working paper

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Abstract

The World Bank/FAO report, The Sunken Billions, argues that the world’s capture fishery resources are non-performing assets with rates of return, or yields, not exceeding zero. The cost to the world economy is in the order of US$50 billion per annum in forgone resource rent. Cases studies commissioned by the World Bank and FAO support these conclusions and show that economic overexploitation of capture fishery resources is spread throughout the world, to be found both within developed and developing fishing states regardless of their economic systems. The question is what needs to be done to reverse the situation and ensure that the world’s capture fishery resources come to make their full potential contribution to the world economy. In order for this potential to be realized, there will need to be a programme of massive resource investment in the overexploited fish stocks. As with any such programme, positive investment requires that costs and sacrifices be borne today in the hope of an economic return in the future. Establishing effective resource investment programmes within coastal state exclusive economic zones will be difficult, particularly in the developing world. However, the greatest challenges are likely to be found in establishing such investment programmes for shared stocks in the high seas. That said, some of the case studies provide encouraging lessons with examples of fish stock restorations that are successful in economic, as well as biological, terms.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationRome
PublisherFood and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Number of pages49
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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