FAO Fisheries Circular No. 942, Rev. 1

FAO Fisheries Circular No. 942, Rev. 1




Rome, 2003

Table of Contents

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© FAO 2003

FAO Inland Water Resources and Aquaculture Service, Fishery Resources Division.
Review of the state of world fishery resources: inland fisheries.
FAO Fisheries Circular. No. 942, Rev.1. Rome, FAO. 2003. 60p.


The objective of this review is to present a broad view of the state of inland capture fisheries as of 2001. Status and trends, are reported along with coverage of selected sections on the impacts of dams on fisheries, fisheries in rice-based ecosystems, database on African water resources, indices of human development and environmental sustainability, and new approaches to improving inland fishery information.

Inland capture fisheries production was reported to FAO by 150 countries with total production of 8.7 million tonnes in 2001. Inland capture fisheries accounted for 6.1 percent of the global total capture fisheries and aquaculture production. The 15-year (1986-2001) trend in production is mainly positive with 109 of the 150 countries maintaining stable or increasing outputs; 81 percent of the production was from these countries where capture fisheries is stable or slowly increasing.

By continent, inland capture fisheries production was 5.8 million tonnes from Asia; 2.1 million tonnes from Africa; 0.3 million tonnes from Europe and South America each; 0.2 million tonnes from North America; and 22 thousand tonnes from Oceania. Twenty countries accounted for 84 percent of the total global inland capture fisheries production with the top producers being China (2.1 million tonnes), India (1.0 million tonnes), and Bangladesh (0.7 million tonnes). Based on production per se, most of the important inland fisheries countries are in Asia and Africa.

Inland capture fisheries are an important source of animal protein. In seven countries inland fisheries provided the only source of fish, in 20 additional countries they accounted for 81 to 99 percent of total fish production from all sources, in four countries they accounted for 61 to 80 percent of total production from the aquatic sector. Seventy one Low-Income Food-Deficit countries produce 80 percent, nearly 7 million tonnes, of the world total inland capture fisheries output. In 27 of the LIFD countries inland capture fisheries are the sole source of fish, and in an additional 22 countries they account for at least 81 percent of the total inland fish production. In an additional three countries inland capture fisheries makes up at least 61 percent of inland production.

The Human Development Index (HDI) measures a country's achievements in three aspects of human development: longevity, knowledge, and a decent standard of living. In 33 countries with low HDI's, inland capture fisheries are the sole source of inland fish in 16, and account for at least 81 percent of inland fish production in an additional 14 countries. Inland capture fisheries production is very important in the fish supply of nearly all of the countries with low HDI's. A threat to the sustainability of inland fisheries is degradation of the environment.

The Environmental Sustainability Index (ESI) is a measure of overall progress towards environmental sustainability that has been developed for 142 countries of which 133 reported inland capture fisheries production. Globally, 94 of the inland capture fisheries countries have ES indices that range from moderate to high, while there are only 39 that range from moderately low to low. Thirty-four (59 percent) of the countries that are highly dependent (i.e. inland fisheries provide at least 81 percent of the total fish supply) on inland fish production for their fish supply have at least a moderate ES index. Of potential concern are the inland fisheries countries for which the ESI ranges from moderately low to low and for which the 15-year trend in production is slowly or moderately decreasing; ten countries fall into this category.




1.1 Introduction
1.2 The place of inland fisheries in world fish production - inland capture fisheries relative to marine capture fisheries and aquaculture
1.3 Comparative evaluation of inland fisheries - the importance of production from inland fisheries at the country level
1.4 Status and trends of inland capture fisheries production


2.1 Introduction
2.2 Novel approaches to the improvement of inland capture fisheries statistics
2.3 Dams and fisheries
2.4 Ricefield fisheries and rice-based aquaculture - underestimated and undervalued resources
2.5 African Water Resource Database
2.6 Indices of human development and environmental sustainability

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