China's distant-water fisheries in the 21st century

Daniel Pauly, Dyhia Belhabib, Roland Blomeyer, William W L Cheung, Andrés M. Cisneros-Montemayor, Duncan Copeland, Sarah Harper, Vicky W Y Lam, Yining Mai, Frédéric Le Manach, Henrik Österblom, Ka Man Mok, Liesbeth van der Meer, Antonio Sanz, Soohyun Shon, U. Rashid Sumaila, Wilf Swartz, Reg A. Watson, Yunlei Zhai, Dirk Zeller

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Abstract

We conservatively estimate the distant-water fleet catch of the People's Republic of China for 2000-2011, using a newly assembled database of reported occurrence of Chinese fishing vessels in various parts of the world and information on the annual catch by vessel type. Given the unreliability of official statistics, uncertainty of results was estimated through a regionally stratified Monte Carlo approach, which documents the presence and number of Chinese vessels in Exclusive Economic Zones and then multiplies these by the expected annual catch per vessel. We find that China, which over-reports its domestic catch, substantially under-reports the catch of its distant-water fleets. This catch, estimated at 4.6 million t year-1 (95% central distribution, 3.4-6.1 million t year-1) from 2000 to 2011 (compared with an average of 368 000 t·year-1 reported by China to FAO), corresponds to an ex-vessel landed value of 8.93 billion € year-1 (95% central distribution, 6.3-12.3 billion). Chinese distant-water fleets extract the largest catch in African waters (3.1 million t year-1, 95% central distribution, 2.0-4.4 million t), followed by Asia (1.0 million t year-1, 0.56-1.5 million t), Oceania (198 000 t year-1, 144 000-262 000 t), Central and South America (182 000 t year-1, 94 000-299 000 t) and Antarctica (48 000 t year-1, 8 000-129 000 t). The uncertainty of these estimates is relatively high, but several sources of inaccuracy could not be fully resolved given the constraints inherent in the underlying data and method, which also prevented us from distinguishing between legal and illegal catch.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)474-488
Number of pages15
JournalFish and Fisheries
Volume15
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

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vessel
fishery
fisheries
China
uncertainty
water
fishing boats
Pacific Ocean Islands
Central America
Exclusive Economic Zone
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Antarctica
Food and Agricultural Organization
statistics
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economics
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methodology

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Pauly, D., Belhabib, D., Blomeyer, R., Cheung, W. W. L., Cisneros-Montemayor, A. M., Copeland, D., ... Zeller, D. (2014). China's distant-water fisheries in the 21st century. Fish and Fisheries, 15(3), 474-488. https://doi.org/10.1111/faf.12032
Pauly, Daniel ; Belhabib, Dyhia ; Blomeyer, Roland ; Cheung, William W L ; Cisneros-Montemayor, Andrés M. ; Copeland, Duncan ; Harper, Sarah ; Lam, Vicky W Y ; Mai, Yining ; Le Manach, Frédéric ; Österblom, Henrik ; Mok, Ka Man ; van der Meer, Liesbeth ; Sanz, Antonio ; Shon, Soohyun ; Sumaila, U. Rashid ; Swartz, Wilf ; Watson, Reg A. ; Zhai, Yunlei ; Zeller, Dirk. / China's distant-water fisheries in the 21st century. In: Fish and Fisheries. 2014 ; Vol. 15, No. 3. pp. 474-488.
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abstract = "We conservatively estimate the distant-water fleet catch of the People's Republic of China for 2000-2011, using a newly assembled database of reported occurrence of Chinese fishing vessels in various parts of the world and information on the annual catch by vessel type. Given the unreliability of official statistics, uncertainty of results was estimated through a regionally stratified Monte Carlo approach, which documents the presence and number of Chinese vessels in Exclusive Economic Zones and then multiplies these by the expected annual catch per vessel. We find that China, which over-reports its domestic catch, substantially under-reports the catch of its distant-water fleets. This catch, estimated at 4.6 million t year-1 (95{\%} central distribution, 3.4-6.1 million t year-1) from 2000 to 2011 (compared with an average of 368 000 t·year-1 reported by China to FAO), corresponds to an ex-vessel landed value of 8.93 billion € year-1 (95{\%} central distribution, 6.3-12.3 billion). Chinese distant-water fleets extract the largest catch in African waters (3.1 million t year-1, 95{\%} central distribution, 2.0-4.4 million t), followed by Asia (1.0 million t year-1, 0.56-1.5 million t), Oceania (198 000 t year-1, 144 000-262 000 t), Central and South America (182 000 t year-1, 94 000-299 000 t) and Antarctica (48 000 t year-1, 8 000-129 000 t). The uncertainty of these estimates is relatively high, but several sources of inaccuracy could not be fully resolved given the constraints inherent in the underlying data and method, which also prevented us from distinguishing between legal and illegal catch.",
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Pauly, D, Belhabib, D, Blomeyer, R, Cheung, WWL, Cisneros-Montemayor, AM, Copeland, D, Harper, S, Lam, VWY, Mai, Y, Le Manach, F, Österblom, H, Mok, KM, van der Meer, L, Sanz, A, Shon, S, Sumaila, UR, Swartz, W, Watson, RA, Zhai, Y & Zeller, D 2014, 'China's distant-water fisheries in the 21st century' Fish and Fisheries, vol. 15, no. 3, pp. 474-488. https://doi.org/10.1111/faf.12032

China's distant-water fisheries in the 21st century. / Pauly, Daniel; Belhabib, Dyhia; Blomeyer, Roland; Cheung, William W L; Cisneros-Montemayor, Andrés M.; Copeland, Duncan; Harper, Sarah; Lam, Vicky W Y; Mai, Yining; Le Manach, Frédéric; Österblom, Henrik; Mok, Ka Man; van der Meer, Liesbeth; Sanz, Antonio; Shon, Soohyun; Sumaila, U. Rashid; Swartz, Wilf; Watson, Reg A.; Zhai, Yunlei; Zeller, Dirk.

In: Fish and Fisheries, Vol. 15, No. 3, 2014, p. 474-488.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T1 - China's distant-water fisheries in the 21st century

AU - Pauly, Daniel

AU - Belhabib, Dyhia

AU - Blomeyer, Roland

AU - Cheung, William W L

AU - Cisneros-Montemayor, Andrés M.

AU - Copeland, Duncan

AU - Harper, Sarah

AU - Lam, Vicky W Y

AU - Mai, Yining

AU - Le Manach, Frédéric

AU - Österblom, Henrik

AU - Mok, Ka Man

AU - van der Meer, Liesbeth

AU - Sanz, Antonio

AU - Shon, Soohyun

AU - Sumaila, U. Rashid

AU - Swartz, Wilf

AU - Watson, Reg A.

AU - Zhai, Yunlei

AU - Zeller, Dirk

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N2 - We conservatively estimate the distant-water fleet catch of the People's Republic of China for 2000-2011, using a newly assembled database of reported occurrence of Chinese fishing vessels in various parts of the world and information on the annual catch by vessel type. Given the unreliability of official statistics, uncertainty of results was estimated through a regionally stratified Monte Carlo approach, which documents the presence and number of Chinese vessels in Exclusive Economic Zones and then multiplies these by the expected annual catch per vessel. We find that China, which over-reports its domestic catch, substantially under-reports the catch of its distant-water fleets. This catch, estimated at 4.6 million t year-1 (95% central distribution, 3.4-6.1 million t year-1) from 2000 to 2011 (compared with an average of 368 000 t·year-1 reported by China to FAO), corresponds to an ex-vessel landed value of 8.93 billion € year-1 (95% central distribution, 6.3-12.3 billion). Chinese distant-water fleets extract the largest catch in African waters (3.1 million t year-1, 95% central distribution, 2.0-4.4 million t), followed by Asia (1.0 million t year-1, 0.56-1.5 million t), Oceania (198 000 t year-1, 144 000-262 000 t), Central and South America (182 000 t year-1, 94 000-299 000 t) and Antarctica (48 000 t year-1, 8 000-129 000 t). The uncertainty of these estimates is relatively high, but several sources of inaccuracy could not be fully resolved given the constraints inherent in the underlying data and method, which also prevented us from distinguishing between legal and illegal catch.

AB - We conservatively estimate the distant-water fleet catch of the People's Republic of China for 2000-2011, using a newly assembled database of reported occurrence of Chinese fishing vessels in various parts of the world and information on the annual catch by vessel type. Given the unreliability of official statistics, uncertainty of results was estimated through a regionally stratified Monte Carlo approach, which documents the presence and number of Chinese vessels in Exclusive Economic Zones and then multiplies these by the expected annual catch per vessel. We find that China, which over-reports its domestic catch, substantially under-reports the catch of its distant-water fleets. This catch, estimated at 4.6 million t year-1 (95% central distribution, 3.4-6.1 million t year-1) from 2000 to 2011 (compared with an average of 368 000 t·year-1 reported by China to FAO), corresponds to an ex-vessel landed value of 8.93 billion € year-1 (95% central distribution, 6.3-12.3 billion). Chinese distant-water fleets extract the largest catch in African waters (3.1 million t year-1, 95% central distribution, 2.0-4.4 million t), followed by Asia (1.0 million t year-1, 0.56-1.5 million t), Oceania (198 000 t year-1, 144 000-262 000 t), Central and South America (182 000 t year-1, 94 000-299 000 t) and Antarctica (48 000 t year-1, 8 000-129 000 t). The uncertainty of these estimates is relatively high, but several sources of inaccuracy could not be fully resolved given the constraints inherent in the underlying data and method, which also prevented us from distinguishing between legal and illegal catch.

KW - Control and Surveillance of fisheries

KW - Distant-water fishing

KW - Illegal

KW - Management

KW - Monte Carlo method

KW - Unreported and unregulated (IUU) catch

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Pauly D, Belhabib D, Blomeyer R, Cheung WWL, Cisneros-Montemayor AM, Copeland D et al. China's distant-water fisheries in the 21st century. Fish and Fisheries. 2014;15(3):474-488. https://doi.org/10.1111/faf.12032