European policies in West Africa: who benefits from fisheries agreements?
Fishery cooperation agreements with the Sub-Saharan West African coastal states are considered by the European Union as purely commercial deals that are designed to maximize access to coastal state fishery resources, secure employment for European harvesting and processing industries and supply European seafood consumption markets at the lowest possible cost. Financial compensation paid by Brussels to the West African countries for fishing rights covers two-thirds or more of the license fees and is a subsidy for European vessel owners. This subsidy puts EU in position of a preferred user of the coastal resources. That displaces foreign investors and local entrepreneurs in the coastal states, distorts economics of the European fishing enterprises and promotes excessive pressure on the resources that greatly harms the marine environment in the West African region. Analysis of EU's relations with Guinea-Bissau shows that together with manipulation of the size of fishing fleet used by EU in this country's waters, there were significant irregularities resulting from excessive by-catch, underpayment of tuna license fees and denial of timely statistical information for the coastal state. Continuation of this type of relations with Sub-Saharan West Africa is against the long-term interests of the coastal states and sustainability of the coastal resources. Unless significant changes in fishing policies of the EU are made, West African coastal countries will face severe overexploitation of their resources and subsequent drop in license revenues. The EU's departure from purely business approach in fisheries relations with the West African coastal countries and termination of subsidization of the European fleets should be considered as important steps toward new fisheries relations with the region On other hand, coastal states should undertake more coordinated approach in dealing with foreign pressures on their resources and harmonize negotiation of the fisheries agreements with the EU. They also must improve the investment climate so foreign fleet operators would be encouraged to integrate their offshore activity with the coastal states' economies.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:marpol:v:26:y:2002:i:2:p:75-93. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamier, Wendy)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.