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Assessing Short-Run and Medium-Run Fishing Capacity at the Industry Level and its Reallocation


Reducing harvesting capacity in fisheries is of international importance. In 1999, member nations of the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) agreed to an International Plan of Action to reduce fishing capacity. Two initial concerns were the acceptance of a workable definition of capacity and the development of methods to calculate capacity. FAO subsequently offered several definitions of capacity. A general definition of capacity is the output level over a given time period that a fishing fleet could expect to catch if the variable inputs are utilized under normal operating conditions given resource levels, technology, and other constraints. Concurrently, however, FAO and representatives of the member nations expressed concerns about reducing capacity at the national level (i.e., a reallocation of capital, labor, and other inputs) and with respect to both the short and long-run. In this paper, we present a possible approach for determining capacity at a more aggregate level than the vessel (e.g., fishery or region) with respect to the short and intermediate-run, and the allocation of fixed and variable inputs across different fisheries and regions. We extend one approach to measuring capacity of a firm to the case of an industry. Based on extensions of this specification, existing capacities are no longer fixed, but may be scaled up or down at will subject to a constant returns to scale technology. This allows for exploring plausible medium-term technological configurations at the industry level. (Click here for paper)

Source: Fare, R., Grosskopf, S., Kerstens, K., Kirkley, J., and D. Squires. 2000. “Assessing short-run and medium-run fishing capacity at the industry level and its reallocation.” In: Proceedings of the Tenth Biennial Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics & Trade: Macrobehavior and Macroresults, July 10-14, 2000, Corvallis, Oregon. Corvallis, OR: International Institute for Fisheries Economics and Trade (IIFET).

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