Technical efficiency effects of input controls: evidence from Australia's banana prawn fishery
The paper provides the first ex-post estimates of the effects on technical efficiency of input controls in a fishery. Using individual vessel data from the northern prawn fishery of Australia for the years 1990–1996 and 1994–2000, a stochastic production frontier is estimated to analyse the efficiency impacts of input controls on engine and vessel size. The results indicate that technical efficiency is increasing in a measure of vessel size and engine capacity that was controlled by the regulator from 1985 to 2001, and decreasing in an unregulated input, gear headrope length. The study shows that fishers have substituted from regulated to unregulated inputs over the period 1990-2000 and technical efficiency has declined coincident with increasing restrictions on vessel size and engine capacity. The decline in technical efficiency indicates that the goal of the regulator to increase economic efficiency has not been realised.
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