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Following the two introductory chapters, the Guide is organized in eight main sections, each dealing with a separate aspect of a fisheries subsidies study:

Chapter 3

Planning and preparing for a fisheries subsidies study

Before starting the actual work on a fisheries subsidies study, there are several aspects to think about with regard to the objective, the scope and the resources needed.

Chapter 4

What is a fisheries subsidy?

This chapter discusses the definition of a fisheries subsidy. It emphasizes the importance of having a good understanding of both the fisheries sector and of the economy of which it is a part in order to be able to define subsidies.

Chapter 5

Different categories of subsidies

To facilitate the analysis of subsidies and to organize our information, it is suggested that fisheries subsidies are classified into four different categories.

Chapter 6

Assessing subsidies

This is the core of the Guide where the assessment of different types of subsidies is discussed. Principles and methodologies are suggested for how to measure the government cost - or revenue - and the value to the industry of fisheries subsidies.

Chapter 7

Costs and earnings analysis - the impact on the industry

In this chapter, a costs and earnings analysis is suggested for analysing the impact of subsidies on the profits of the industry in more detail. The classification of subsidies is expanded to include a dimension determining which type of costs or revenue that is being affected by a particular subsidy.

Chapter 8

Comparative analysis

Building on the results from the assessment of subsidies, this chapter suggests ways of examining the relative importance of fisheries subsidies.

Chapter 9

What to include in a subsidy description

In addition to assessing subsidies, such as estimating their economic value, there are other aspects that may be important to document and report. A checklist for what to include in a description of a fisheries subsidy, based on the information required for the WTO subsidy notification procedures, is suggested.

Chapter 10

Reporting on subsidies

In this last chapter, a few ideas are given with regard to how to structure the report on a fisheries subsidies study.

The user of the Guide should chose those parts of the document that are relevant for a particular study. Not all sections may be of interest to everyone. It is however recommended to read through the whole Guide to start with to gain a good understanding of the subject field and the issues at stake. Even though the Guide makes an effort to present the topics in the same order as they are likely to occur in the work on a fisheries study, there are several cross-cutting issues that are not possible to present in the assumed sequential order. It should also be recognized that the work is likely to be an iterative process that will take us backwards and forwards in the Guide several times. The index at the end of the document may be useful in this respect.

To illustrate various approaches and methodologies, several examples have been included in the Guide - in particular on how to asses subsidies - and are presented in “boxes” throughout the text. These examples refer to an invented country called Seidisbus and are not real subsidies as such. However, the contents of the examples are in most cases derived from the experience of the four prototype studies carried out for the preparation of this document. Hence, it is believed that the examples cover some of the more important subsidies as well as the most common problems related to their assessment. At the same time, it should be pointed out that it has not been possible to include all aspects and types of subsidies in the document and the Guide does not lay claim on being exhaustive or fitting all situations equally well; omissions are inevitable. It is still hoped, though, that the guidelines will help identifying and assessing all types of fisheries subsidies, whether mentioned explicitly in the Guide or not.

A bibliography is included at the end of the report and a glossary is found in Appendix I, giving explanations to some of the economic expressions and terms used in the Guide.

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