fishermen and other members of fishing communities. The perceived threats are the concentration of quotas in the hands of a few individuals and/or communities, a lopsided distribution of economic gains accompanying IFQs, and a change in social relations among the members of a community.

Recommendations: The decision whether quota shares should be transferable, one of the most critical elements in the design of an IFQ program, should be left up to the regional councils or other regional or local groups because it depends entirely on the specific goals and objectives of the management regime. If economic efficiency and rapid downsizing are the primary goals of an IFQ program, transferability should be as free as possible. However, if other goals are more important, such as protecting an owner-operator mode of organizing production, preventing absentee ownership, or protecting fishery-dependent coastal communities, it may be necessary to restrict transferability—either geographically, between groups of fishermen, between bona fide fishermen and others, with respect to time, or possibly all of these.

Temporary Transfers (within fishing year or within season)

Findings: Some degree of leasing may be important to allow fisheries to adapt to change, address concerns of overages and bycatch of the non-target species, and lower the enforcement burden. For many people, however, the social relations of tenancy that may be established through repeated leasing violate community values. The practice of leasing is likely to alter the relations of vessel owners and crew members. Leasing can benefit some and disadvantage others, and thus violate deeply felt concerns and generate conflicts and moral debates. Opinions on leasing by fishermen testifying to the committee were divided. The committee also heard how New Zealand and other countries reduce bycatch in their fisheries by allowing fishermen to lease quota to cover their bycatch species, rather than discarding them.

Recommendation: Leasing of quota should generally be permitted but with restrictions as needed to avoid undesirable side effects such as absentee ownership. Restrictions on the proportion of total quota that can be leased, the frequency that individuals can lease quota, and the taxation of leased quota to help affected communities are means to reduce the negative effects of leasing.

Permanent Transfers

Findings: Many objectives of IFQ programs require some degree of transferability or flexibility for industry participants (particularly for purposes of economic efficiency). However, unrestricted transferability can lead to socially negative side effects such as an excessive degree of consolidation or

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001

Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement