A Survey of Current Issues
Edited by Henk Folmer and Tom Tietenberg
Chapter 1: The management of high seas fisheries resources and the implementation of the UN Fish Stocks Agreement of 1995
1. The management of high seas ﬁsheries resources and the implementation of the UN Fish Stocks Agreement of 1995 Trond Bjørndal and Gordon Munro 1. INTRODUCTION From 1993 to 1995, the United Nations mounted an international conference, the UN Conference on Straddling Fish Stocks and Highly Migratory Fish Stocks, to address and, it was hoped, to alleviate a worldwide ﬁsheries management crisis, focused on straddling and highly migratory ﬁsh stocks. The Conference brought forth an Agreement, popularly referred to as the UN Fish Stocks Agreement,1 which became available for signing in December 1995. Almost exactly six years later, the Agreement came into force, which is to say that it achieved the status of international treaty law. In this chapter, we shall attempt to provide an assessment, from an economist’s perspective, of the Agreement, and of its prospects. In so doing, we shall: 1. 2. 3. review the history and origins of the Agreement; review the basic economics of management of transboundary ﬁshery resources; assess, with the reviews of the history of the Agreement and the economics of transboundary ﬁshery management in hand, both the problems of implementing the Agreement and the prospects for its success; provide a few illustrative case studies; and present our conclusions. 4. 5. 2. THE HISTORY AND THE ORIGINS OF THE UN FISH STOCKS AGREEMENT OF 1995 The origins of the straddling ﬁsh stock/highly migratory ﬁsh stock management crisis, and the UN conference to which the crisis gave rise, can be 1 2 Yearbook...
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