capital gains taxes, the 3% exvessel fee, and the 0.5% registration and transfer fee could generate significant net revenues for the nation, or for individuals and communities disadvantaged by IFQs.
In analyzing these potential benefits and costs, it is important to consider that there are continual changes in the structure of fishery management. In some cases, the long-term economic benefits of shifting management to IFQs may be significant. In other fisheries, these long-term benefits may not be as significant. It is important that no matter what the management regime used, the economic costs and benefits of this management system be considered in comparison to other management options and their potential costs and benefits. If IFQ programs are proposed for other fisheries, the committee recommends that improved socioeconomic data collection and analysis be conducted to provide a clearer indication as to both the national and the local costs and benefits of this and alternative management tools.
Care must be taken in distinguishing between real benefits and costs on the one hand and fiscal effects, or transfers, on the other. The real net benefits of an IFQ program consist of increases in revenues over costs, including management and enforcement costs. Increased tax revenues are important, however, due to the fact that management and enforcement costs are currently being paid almost exclusively from public revenue and increased tax revenues from capital gains taxes. Other sources also transfer funds to pay for the administration of these programs. The economic benefits of an IFQ program will be reflected in the value of quota, which appears to have increased since the inception of the program. Economic benefits will also be reflected in better quality of product and higher demand for the product.
In summary, this appendix provides some indication of the range of issues that must be considered when comparing IFQ management to other forms of management. A worthwhile exercise in the development of future IFQ programs is to identify the range of economic costs and benefits associated with IFQ management. The collection of data on the price of transfer, the value of the quota, and other economic factors will greatly improve the ability to assess the overall costs and benefits of IFQs on the regional and national levels. The only U.S. IFQ programs that could be analyzed in any depth are those for the Alaskan halibut and sablefish fisheries. The SCOQ and wreckfish IFQ programs collect very few of the data necessary for a thorough analysis of net economic benefits and costs. The committee recommends mandatory reporting of transfer price information for all existing and new IFQ programs.