Dominique F. Gréboval
Senior Fishery Planning Officer
Fishery Policy and Planning Division
FAO, Rome, Italy
The International Plan of Action for the Management of Fishing Capacity and Selected Issues Pertaining to Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing.
Document AUS:IUU/2000/13. 2000. 8 p.
This paper addresses some of the linkages which exist between
the effective management of fishing capacity and the control of illegal,
unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. Selected issues are discussed in
reference to the International Plan of Action for the Management of Fishing
Capacity (IPOA-CAP) adopted by COFI in 1999. Among these are issues pertaining
to monitoring and assessment; management methods; fleet reduction programmes;
high seas fisheries; and the holistic consideration of the many factors that
contribute to overcapacity and unsustainability. The paper concludes that the
implementation of the IPOA-CAP would significantly contribute to reducing
illegal unreported and unregulated fishing. Recommendations are made as regards
some of the policy requirements that would need to be considered for an
effective implementation of the IPOA-CAP.
PREPARATION OF THIS REPORT
This paper has been prepared as one in a series of specialist background papers for the Expert Consultation on Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing Organized by the Government of Australia in Co-operation with FAO, Sydney, Australia, 15-19 May 2000. It is expected that this series of papers and the expert consultation will contribute to the elaboration of an international plan of action (IPOA-IUU) to deal effectively with all forms of illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, the development of which is being undertaken in accordance with a decision of the 1999 FAO Ministerial Meeting on the Implementation of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries. The views expressed in this paper are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of FAO or of any of its Members.
Note: To avoid confusion between references to the international plans of action relating to the management of fishing capacity on the one hand and to IUU fishing on the other hand, in this paper they are designated IPOA-CAP and IPOA-IUU respectively.
There is a rather obvious linkage between IUU fishing and excess fishing capacity: the more vessels, the less fish, the larger the tendency to engage in IUU fishing so as to preserve adequate return on fishing activities. A less obvious linkage also exists whereby attempts to control and to reduce excess fishing capacity may result involuntarily in promoting IUU fishing. The effective and timely implementation of the IPOA-CAP should therefore contribute significantly to the reduction of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, but caution would nevertheless be required to avoid undesirable outcomes.
Enhanced monitoring and assessment capabilities should be developed at national, regional and global levels, with due emphasis being given to creating appropriate fleet records and to addressing the issue of fleet mobility - a key issue to controlling both fishing capacity and IUU fishing. The establishment of more appropriate records of fishing vessels, as stipulated in the IPOA-CAP, is a basic requirement. In addition to monitoring physical characteristics, it is also essential to better assess fleet dynamics in terms of investment-disinvestment and in terms of deployment - allocation of fishing inputs in time and space, and especially among fisheries.
The control of excess fishing capacity and IUU fishing requires a much greater harmonization of management strategies and policies between the main levels of fishery management: fishery sector, industry segments and fisheries per se.
The most appropriate methods for controlling fishing capacity -although not specified in the IPOA-CAP- imply strictly controlled and rather exclusive access and a direct or indirect control of both inputs and output. Getting around such controls might involve, inter alia, under-reporting of catch and/or fishing inputs, illegal fishing practices, and the partial reallocation of fleet capacity to other fisheries. Examples are given in the document of steps that can be taken to avoid undesirable reactions to the management of fishing capacity.
Management schemes involving property rights, such as ITQs, do provide strong incentive for capacity adjustment but not for permanent disposal. Other methods do not provide such incentive, and attempts to reduce fleet size through buyback programmes may often lead to a net increase in capacity if implemented within such management frameworks. For these reasons, caution should be exercised when designing and implementing any buyback programmes. The issue of vessel disposal also needs to be carefully reviewed and caution needs to be exercised by countries undertaking such schemes to avoid uncontrolled export of capacity to overcapitalized fisheries outside their jurisdiction and to the high seas in particular.
The management of fleet capacity and IUU fishing may also benefit from: the adoption of more specific conditions for access to high seas fisheries by flag vessels; the strengthening and empowerment of regional fishery organizations; the creation of new organizations to ensure full coverage of the resources concerned; strengthened mechanisms to encourage non-members to become member of such organizations; and more effective donor support to the implementation of the IPOA-CAP and IPOA-IUU by developing countries.
SUGGESTIONS FOR THE IPOA TEXT
1. Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing can be broadly defined as fishing operations conducted outside agreed conservation and management schemes, including related arrangements for data collection. IUU fishing undermines conservation and management efforts undertaken by national fisheries authorities within exclusive economic zones (EEZs) and within the geographic areas of competence of regional fisheries management organizations (RFOs), including on the high seas.
2. Circumstances leading to IUU fishing are complex but usually related to insufficient control or inappropriate management schemes. A key consideration is to achieve more effective flag State control as envisaged by existing international fishery instruments and in conventions establishing regional fishery management organizations. Other considerations include the need for more efficient monitoring, control and surveillance (MCS) and improved fisheries management schemes. Regarding fisheries management, an issue of particular relevance to IUU fishing is the existence of excess fishing capacity. There is a rather obvious linkage between IUU fishing and excess fishing capacity: the more vessels, the less fish, the larger the tendency to engage in IUU fishing so as to preserve adequate return on fishing activities. A less obvious linkage also exists whereby attempts to control and to reduce excess fishing capacity may result involuntarily in promoting IUU fishing.
3. The issue of fishing capacity has been raised quite recently in reference to growing concern about the spreading phenomenon of excessive fishing inputs and overcapitalization in world fisheries. The issue is essentially one of having too many vessels or excessive harvesting power in a growing number of fisheries. The existence of excessive fishing capacity is largely responsible for the degradation of fishery resources, for the dissipation of food production potential and for significant economic waste. This manifests itself especially in the form of redundant fishing inputs and the overfishing of most valued fish stocks.
4. Excess fishing capacity affects many domestic fisheries throughout the world and, in an even more pervasive form, many high seas fisheries. The globalization of the phenomenon is illustrated by the relative stagnation of world marine catches of major species since the late 1980s. FAO data indicate that nominal fleet size seems to have peaked during the mid-1990s. However, actual fishing capacity may still be increasing if one takes into account the improvement in efficiency and refitting of older vessels.
5. Excess fishing capacity in world fisheries came about progressively as a result of various factors, such as:
6. At the individual fishery level, the origin of excess fishing capacity stems essentially from the widespread tendency of over-investment and over-fishing under open-access conditions. This textbook case of market failure implies a divergence between rational individual investment behaviour and societal optimality. It can be noted that imposing various constraints on harvesting patterns (regulated open-access) does not significantly change the incentive for over-investment. It is also necessary to clearly differentiate localized overfishing from overcapitalization or excess capacity. The first is clearly the case of excessive effort being applied to an isolated stock; the second, after allowing for possible reallocation, is clearly one of having, throughout the fishing sector or for a large group of fisheries, excessive and redundant harvesting capacity which cannot easily be re-allocated. It is therefore a global problem which takes all its significance at national and international levels rather than at the level of individual fisheries. As such, the management of fishing capacity is a broader concern which needs to be addressed within and across various fisheries and jurisdictions.
2. INTERNATIONAL PLAN OF ACTION
7. The Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries recognized that excessive fishing capacity threatens the worlds fishery resources and their ability to provide sustainable catches and benefits to fishers and consumers. In Article 6.3, it is recommended that States should prevent overfishing and excess fishing capacity and should implement management measures to ensure that fishing effort is commensurate with the productive capacity of the fishery resources and their sustainable utilization.
8. At its Twenty-second Session in 1997, the Committee on Fisheries (COFI) recommended that a technical consultation be organized by FAO to clarify issues related to excess fishing capacity and to prepare guidelines. The International plan of Action for the Management of Fishing Capacity (IPOA-CAP) was prepared subsequently and adopted by COFI in 1999. 
9. The IPOA-CAP is a voluntary instrument elaborated within the framework of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, as an element of fisheries conservation and management. The objective of the IPOA-CAP is for States and regional fisheries organizations, to achieve worldwide preferably by 2003, but not later than 2005, an efficient, equitable and transparent management of fishing capacity. The IPOA-CAP further specifies that when confronted with an overcapacity problem (where capacity is undermining achievement of long-term sustainability outcomes), States and RFOs should endeavour to limit at present level and progressively reduce the fishing capacity applied to affected fisheries. Otherwise, the IPOA-CAP calls for States and RFOs to exercise caution to avoid growth in capacity undermining long-term sustainability.
10. It is interesting to note that the IPOA-CAP implicitly defines fishing capacity in terms of fishing inputs (fleets) and that it establishes a definite linkage between excess fleet size and wide-spread overfishing. As such, the IPOA-CAP clearly aims at achieving a balance between fleet size (inputs) and sustainable production (output). Management objectives are not stipulated in the IPOA-CAP, as the definition of such objectives are clearly a prerogative of States and RFOs. Management objectives can be set with explicit reference to sustainability, economic efficiency and precautionary principles. A minimum standard would be to achieve a long term balance between fishing inputs and MSY. Even in this context, the IPOA-CAP would allow for increased economic efficiency in the form of avoiding redundant fleet expansion beyond the level of fleet capacity required to harvest MSY. While the management measures required to manage fishing capacity are not really specified in the IPOA-CAP, balancing inputs and outputs clearly requires a direct or indirect control on fleet size and harvesting capacity.
11. Further consideration is given in the next sections to selected aspects of the IPOA-CAP that are of specific relevance to limiting IUU fishing.
3. MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT OF FISHING CAPACITY
12. The IPOA-CAP calls for States and RFOs to monitor and assess fishing capacity. It also calls for States to establish compatible national records of fishing vessels and to support the establishment by FAO of an international record of vessels operating on the high seas - awaiting the entry into force of the FAO Compliance Agreement.
13. The measurement and monitoring of excess fishing capacity is a complex endeavour. Assessing fishing capacity requires assessing physical inputs and fish production in a combined manner, further taking into account the fact that physical inputs may be applied potentially to various stocks and areas. Assessing excess capacity also requires the definition of target exploitation levels. Present methods of capacity assessment have been relatively empirical. These are usually sufficient to estimate grossly the magnitude of excess fishing capacity, even if applied research is still required for the development of more appropriate monitoring and assessment tools.
14. The greatest challenge to the monitoring and assessment of fishing capacity is obviously the lack of fleet data. The monitoring of fleets remains largely deficient in most countries. As a result, global and regional data banks (such as those available from Lloyds and FAO, and those compiled by some regional fishery organizations) are also rather incomplete and usually quite difficult to use. The establishment of more appropriate records of fishing vessels, as stipulated in the IPOA-CAP, is a basic requirement. However, for the purpose of assessing and managing fishing capacity, as well as IUU fishing, a significant departure from present monitoring procedures is required.
15. Typically, most countries still monitor inputs and outputs in a rather disjointed manner: i) a record of vessels is established at national level with vessel data bases that may include physical characteristics as well as key economic indicators, including catch and revenue; ii) complementary marketing data may be gathered at port level; ii) catch and effort is monitored at fishery level. This approach does not easily allow for the monitoring of fleet operation and would suffice if and only if one assumes that there is no mobility of fleets among fisheries. Otherwise, fleet dynamics would also have to be carefully monitored.
16. In addition to monitoring physical characteristics, fleet dynamics need to be assessed in terms of investment-disinvestment and in terms of deployment - allocation of fishing inputs in time and space, and especially among fisheries. As such, fleet assessment should be considered to be as important as stock assessment. We are very far from this situation, even if both types of assessment are essential for the joint management of fleet capacity and fisheries resources. Enhanced monitoring and assessment capabilities should be developed not only at national level, but at regional and global levels, with due emphasis being given to creating appropriate fleet records and to addressing the issue of fleet mobility - a key issue to controlling both fishing capacity and IUU fishing.
4. MANAGEMENT METHODS
17. Fisheries management methods may be classified in two groups: those which attempt to block the incentive of open-access which leads fishers to race for fish and to overextend their investment (incentive blocking methods), and those aiming at changing the incentive system itself (incentive adjusting methods). The management of fishing capacity further requires that one accounts fully for the mobility and non-malleability of capital stock on the one hand, and for its interaction with complex fishery stocks on the other.
18. Incentive blocking methods include: licence limitation schemes, vessel catch limits, individual effort quotas, and gear and vessel restrictions. Some of these methods may be combined, and complemented by TACs. All methods mitigate to some extent the two main outcomes of open-access: the race for fish and capital stuffing. However they have seldom proved effective in controlling fishing capacity, especially in the long term. The predominantly used method concerns licence limitation schemes, often used in connection with TACs. The efficiency of this method has often been limited in the past by the conditions under which it has been implemented, such as: introduction of such schemes in already mature or overexploited fisheries with rather unrestricted conditions for initial licence allocation; insufficient attention paid to input substitution possibilities; insufficient account taken of gains in productivity resulting from technological improvements; and, too often, implementation against a sectoral policy background of laissez-faire, subsidization and of prompt compromise on socially or politically sensitive aspects.
19. It is felt that when these issues are carefully addressed, licence limitation schemes can prove quite effective in managing fishing capacity. Interestingly enough, licence limitation may take many of the attributes of incentive adjusting schemes. This is the case, for example, whenever the implementation of licence schemes purposely leads fishermen to coalesce, rather than compete, or when licence schemes are implemented together with individual harvest quotas. In this context, one may stress the need to carefully address input substitution and the impact of technological development on fishing capacity.
20. Incentive adjusting methods include: individual quotas, taxes and co-management schemes, including community-based management. Taxes may indeed be seen as a means of correcting erroneous market signals through price adjustment mechanisms aiming at extracting rents so as to avoid resource depletion and economic waste. Implementation is difficult, however, and taxes, in the form of royalties, would generally be considered at best as a complementary measure. The other incentive adjusting methods aim at creating full or partial property rights for fishermen, therefore largely eliminating the race for fish and, in the case of individual transferable quotas (ITQs) in particular, enhancing capacity limitation incentives. For co-management and community-based management to be effective in this context, schemes must of course imply a certain degree of empowerment, exclusivity and collective cohesion.
21. The management of capacity does require the adoption of policies which clearly specify access conditions. Incentive adjusting methods, in the form of individual or collective quotas, might therefore prove more efficient than other management methods for the control of fishing capacity. While there is growing evidence that this may indeed be the case, one notes however that: i) individual quota systems are not readily applicable to many fisheries situations, e.g. most small scale and tropical fisheries; ii) co-management and community-management schemes are still in development and insufficiently researched; and iii) rent extraction through the imposition of royalties is proving difficult to apply, especially as a means of controlling capacity. While new avenues are being developed, there are many instances for which incentive blocking methods and licence limitation schemes in particular will constitute the best available option. Overall, the elaboration and implementation of more appropriate management schemes require that extensive consultation with stakeholders be promoted so as to ensure maximum consensus on capacity management among various user groups.
22. The most appropriate methods for controlling fishing capacity imply strictly controlled and rather exclusive access and a direct or indirect control of both inputs and output. Obviously, the stricter the controls, the greater the incentive to adopt IUU practices. Getting around such controls might involve, inter alia, under-reporting of catch and/or fishing inputs, illegal fishing practices, and the partial reallocation of fleet capacity to other fisheries. There are a number of steps that can be taken to avoid undesirable reactions to management, such as:
23. On this last point, most fisheries are still managed mostly as isolated entities and it is not rare to see management efforts in specific fisheries being undermined by conflicting sectoral policies. One can actually distinguish three main levels of fisheries management: the industry as a whole, its main segments (generally differentiated on a product and/or technological basis), and specific fisheries (defined for management purposes on the basis of specific fish stocks). The control of excess fishing capacity and IUU fishing requires a much greater harmonization of management strategies and policies between these three levels of management, further noting this is the case both at national and international levels.
24. Another issue to be considered carefully in the management of fishing capacity is the relative role of alternative production methods. Although the management of capacity should be designed to encourage efficient and evolving technologies, it also requires governments to balance the interest of alternative modes of exploitation and user groups. A case in point is the respective role of industrial and small scale fisheries in developing countries and of commercial and recreational fisheries in general.
5. FLEET REDUCTION PROGRAMMES
25. The reduction of excess capacity implies disposal of vessels and the layoff of fishers. Within areas under national jurisdiction, capacity which cannot be re-allocated to underused resources would have to be left to depreciate, to be scrapped or exported. Obviously, in countries where re-allocation possibilities have been exhausted, capacity adjustments is a rather difficult and sensitive task. Capital depreciation would generally involve too slow a joint process of capital reduction and fish stock rebuilding. Thus some induced capital reduction would generally be called for, with specific accompanying measures for labour when required. Incentive adjusting schemes involving property rights, such as ITQs, do provide strong incentive for capacity adjustment but not for permanent disposal. Incentive blocking methods do not provide such incentive, and attempts to reduce fleet size through buyback programmes may often lead to a net increase in capacity if implemented within such management frameworks (the buyback of older boats being often more than compensated for by subsequent creeping investment). For these reasons, caution should be exercised when designing and implementing any buyback programmes.
26. Under rights-based management schemes, the internalization of the potential rent should make it possible for the industry and the management authority to find arrangements to finance buyback schemes. Cost sharing mechanisms to undertake vessel reallocation or scrapping should preferably be negotiated when introducing schemes to effectively control capacity. In any case both sides would need to be convinced that capacity will be controlled effectively, meaning that potential rent will actually be transformed into actual rent. If the industry may be expected to participate in the cost of downward capacity adjustments, it is likely that capacity reduction schemes would involve significant subsidies. A trend in this direction is already observed. These subsidies could be considered as subsidies to the resource and its sustainability. But if these subsidies failed to have a lasting impact on fishing capacity, these would amount to subsidies to the harvesting industry.
27. A related problem is that of vessel disposal. Short of scrapping vessels that are considered redundant from a national perspective, capacity reduction schemes may induce transfer to the high seas or to the EEZs of other nations. The transfer of excess capacity to the EEZs of other nations may be undertaken through private sales of used vessels or in the context of international access agreements. Regarding such transfers, the IPOA-CAP only calls for States to ensure that no transfer of capacity to the jurisdiction of another State should be carried out without the express consent and authorization of that State.
28. This may seem insufficient in view of the impact that capacity reallocation could have on the management of capacity in developing countries. Developing countries have benefited from the possibility of acquiring cheap second-hand vessels originating from efforts aimed at reducing harvesting capacity or from fleet modernization schemes undertaken in developed countries. But the massive disposal of generally subsidized used vessels also had negative impacts in these countries: distorting input prices; exacerbating conflicts with the small-scale sector; and precipitating the rapid build-up of excessive capacity in many fisheries. The transfer of excess capacity may also take place in the context of international access agreements. While access agreements are negotiated among sovereign States, one notes, however, that such transfers are often subsidized and may involve developing countries that could be induced to compromise between immediate returns and long-term resource sustainability. A code of good practice may be required to ensure more cautious transfers and to facilitate the negotiation of more appropriate access agreements.
29. The transfer of excess capacity to the high seas is easier as it does not involve negotiating international agreements. The IPOA-CAP recalled the duties of flag States to avoid approving such a transfer to areas where it would be inconsistent with responsible fishing under the Code of Conduct. Furthermore, in recognition of any eventual change of flag, the IPOA-CAP also stressed in Article 20 the need to deal with the problem of States which do not fulfil their responsibilities as flag States.
30. Appropriate capacity reduction is central to the successful implementation of the IPOA-CAP. Poor implementation in terms of non-lasting reduction and undesirable transfer, may actually aggravate the overcapacity problem and contribute to IUU fishing. A major challenge is for States to ensure that reduction schemes be promoted only when effective control of capacity has been duly achieved. Another is for States to control the export or transfer of capacity outside their jurisdiction and to adopt mechanisms that would selectively prevent any transfers to fisheries and areas recognized as significantly overfished.
6. SPECIFIC CONSIDERATIONS FOR HIGH SEAS FISHERIES
31. The management of fishing capacity in the high seas does remain a challenge under existing international law. The IPOA-CAP urges States to participate in international agreements which relate to the management of fishing capacity and in particular the FAO Compliance Agreement and the 1995 UN Fish Stocks Agreement. It also calls for various measures which would strengthen international collaboration and the role of regional fisheries organizations vis à vis the management of shared stocks and high seas fisheries.
32. High seas fisheries may be confronted with an even greater overcapitalization problem than EEZ fisheries. This stems from the prevalence of rather open-access conditions, with coastal countries fishing increasingly in adjacent high seas areas, and from the fact that there are at present no internationally agreed measures to obligate States to control fishing capacity. Within the present legal framework of the high seas, contained in the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, the management of capacity is very much subsumed within a catch quota system, with the regional fishery organizations administering quotas being largely unable to limit access by vessels of participating States and to deny access to vessels from non-participating States.
33. The 1995 UN Fish Stocks Agreement does not specifically include provisions for reducing fleet capacity. However, it tightens the obligations of flag States to adhere to conservation and management measures imposed by regional fishery organizations and allows these organizations to better monitor fleet capacity and deployment, and to adjust limit reference points in order to account for fishing capacity considerations. The FAO Compliance Agreement further provides a mechanism for collating fleet information at the global level and a basic tool for compliance and enforcement of authorizations. The IPOA-CAP recalled that improved management of the high seas requires first and foremost the urgent ratification of these agreements.
34. The IPOA-CAP also recommends, inter alia, that States:
35. More specific measures need to be adopted at the national, international and global levels to ensure active implementation of these rather general principles. In relation to the management of fleet capacity and IUU fishing, this may involve, inter alia, defining more specific conditions for: entry and participation in the fishery sector and specific fisheries; the implementation of fleet reduction programmes; access to high seas fisheries by flag vessels. Further steps may be required in the strengthening and empowerment of regional fishery organizations, the creation of new organizations to ensure full coverage of the resources concerned, and in encouraging non-members to become member of such organizations.
7. FACTORS CONTRIBUTING TO OVERCAPACITY AND UNSUSTAINABILITY
36. The IPOA-CAP recognizes that several factors do contribute to overcapacity and unsustainable exploitation of fisheries resources. In the elaboration of national plans, the IPOA-CAP urges States to assess, reduce and progressively eliminate all factors, including subsidies and economic incentives, contributing directly or indirectly to the build-up of excessive capacity. A complementary recommendation called for FAO to assist with: a further analysis aimed at identifying factors contributing to overcapacity such as, inter alia, lack of input and output control, unsustainable fishery management methods and subsidies which contribute to overcapacity.
37. Some of these factors are listed in paragraph 5 above. They relate largely to the resilient prevalence of open access conditions, in spite of management efforts deployed to limit harvesting behavior. The lack of appropriate conditions for entry and participation, linked to the direct or indirect control of both inputs and outputs would thus appear to be the principal factor of unsustainability and overcapacity. Other factors appear to be secondary.
38. Among these factors are the difficulty of implementing fishery-specific management schemes, even if theoretically appropriate. This would especially be the case if the incentive to circumvent regulations remains strong and if industry involvement remains ineffective. The present inefficiency of many MCS systems is another factor which may be addressed, but which may also be addressed by adopting fishery management schemes that are more efficient in terms of incentive and industry participation. The growing imbalance between demand and necessarily limited supply, as well as other factors affecting input and output prices may also play an important role in promoting undesired capacity expansion and unsustainability.
39. One such factor is the use of subsidies and other economic and fiscal incentives which have a direct bearing on fishing capacity. There is no doubt that heavy subsidization contributed substantially to the rapid and often excessive growth of the fishing fleets in the 1970s and 1980s. Although this remains insufficiently documented, subsidization programmes appear to have been significantly reduced in many countries since the late 1980s. The IPOA-CAP recommended that States endeavour to reduce and progressively eliminate subsidies that directly or indirectly promote overcapacity. Work is presently under way in FAO, in concert with WTO, to further address this issue by identifying the types of subsidies that either contribute to overcapacity and unsustainability or to trade distortion. This suggests that subsidies, when required in a fishery or sectoral development context, could be shifted from conventional capital to the promotion of resource conservation, human skills and institutional development. As pointed out before, it is likely that subsidies will be used increasingly to reallocate or reduce fishing capacity. Experiences in this area tend to indicate that insufficient caution is usually exercised regarding the conditions under which such schemes are implemented.
8. CONCLUDING REMARKS
40. The effective and timely implementation of the IPOA-CAP should contribute significantly to the reduction of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing. Towards this end, the IPOA-CAP also calls for appropriate support to be provided to developing countries on issues related to the management of their fishing capacity. Attempts to develop specific initiatives, by FAO, but also through the Forum for Sustainable Fisheries initiative of the World Bank have so far received limited support. Support to developing and implementing improved national policies and specific management measures would require training, technical assistance and financing. Such support is much in demand by many developing countries and considered essential to the proper implementation of the IPOA-CAP. It will also be much needed to implement an eventual international plan of action on IUU fishing. Support could be provided within a regional approach, recognizing the need for enhanced regional collaboration for the management of fishing capacity and for combating IUU fishing. There may be a need to consider a specific initiative to promote donor support to the implementation of the IPOA-CAP and the IPOA-IUU by developing countries.