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Sustainable Fisheries

Stock dependency: a Swedish project


The CFP puts a special emphasis in preserving viable economic and social conditions for coastal communities relying on fisheries. The purpose of this project is to build a policy support tool to assess the economic dependency on regulated stocks for fishing coastal communities in Sweden. The tool gives the possibility to see which coastal communities are likely to be more affected in economic terms from the setting of quotas.

The project complements previous research on coastal communities by JRC in which dependency ratios on fishing activities, in terms of employment and GVA, were calculated on the "land side" in respect of general statistics for the areas surrounding the fishing ports. The availability of detailed logbook data in this project gives more possibilities to disaggregate economic analyses at the level of fishing ports, addressing some limitations which were present in the previous study on coastal communities and examining fisheries dependencies on the "sea side".



The logbook data provides information on the quantity of catches by ICES rectangles and species. This data is put in relation with the boundaries of the fishing areas for which a quota has been defined in the Regulation (EU) No 43/2014 of 20 January 2014. Once a spatial relation is established between catches and stocks, the dependency to the stock is calculated as the share of GVA generated by the related catches and the total GVA from fishing activities. The data is aggregated from the individual vessels to the ports of registration of the vessels and to the ports of landings. At these ports the dependency ratios are presented with other indicators on employment, capacity and profitability, calculated on the basis of economic performance parameters from the STECF annual economic report on the EU fishing fleet.  More information on the methods can be found here.


Assumptions and limitations

The tool shows a linkage between ports and stocks but does not assess the economic impact in reference to the size of the quotas.

The definition of stocks is from a regulatory rather than biological perspective. In this sense the tool is designed to support policy decisions rather than bio-economic modelling. For the same species several stock definitions with overlapping boundaries may be present on the basis of the special conditions set in the regulation; it is therefore not possible with this tool to aggregate figures by species.

The dependency ratios are calculated on the basis of  historical data on fishing activity. Fishing behaviour may change during the year of reference of the regulation as a consequence of the setting of the quota. The tool is designed for preventive assessment of economic relevance of policy measures at local level and not for the monitoring quota uptakes or compliance on the basis of more recent data from the control regulation.

The dependency ratios and total GVA are given also for the landing ports considering that part of the benefit of the economic activity may spill over not only to the home port of the vessels but also to markets and coastal communities where the fish is landed. Landing ports outside Sweden are only considering the contribution of Swedish vessels.

The introducing chart shows the relevance of catches for each of the stocks as defined in TACs and quota EU Regulation for 2014. The maps present the total GVA (size of circles) and the stock dependency ratios (shading) at each landing port (left) and home port (right). The tables provide in addition to the dependency ratios and catches associated to the stock, the total number of vessels, total employment and total GVA at each port. Data for a specific stock can be filtered by clicking in the overview chart or by selecting the stock in the dropdown menu. Figures are provided for the period 2008-2013.


The project is carried out in collaboration between the Joint Research Centre and the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management. We thank DG MARE for providing geographical data on stocks definitions as in the TACs and quota Regulation.