Individual Transferable Quotas (ITQ) in Chilean Fisheries: A tale of economic success and social disconformity
Vice-Chancellor of Management and Finance, University of Talca, Chile
In this talk, Hugo Salgado reviews the experience of ITQs in Chile. He discusses the observed economic benefits, including creating more secure jobs, products of higher value, and more exports with reduced catches. In addition, he speaks about the challenges that have come with ITQs including industry concentration, unemployment, entry of new fishermen into the artisanal sector, entry barriers in the processing industry, and decreased wages in the harvesting and processing industry. Hugo discusses how the highly concentrated industry now has more political power to influence regulators and the quota-setting process, which has led to quotas being set much higher than biological recommendations, while harvests have been lower than the quotas set during the past few years. Fish stocks do not seem to recover, indicating overexploitation. All of this has generated intense debate between those who are benefitting and those who are being negatively affected by the ITQ system. Hugo asserts that understanding this process is crucial to designing ITQ systems that could contribute to more sustainable fisheries in developing countries, not only from an economic perspective, but also from a biological and social perspective.