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Figure 1. Fishing capital and catch values 1945-1997 Indices 1960=100. Source: National Economic Institute. The development of the Icelandic fisheries in the post-war era closely followed the path predicted for common property fisheries.
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TAC in the herring fishery in late 60’s
TAC did not halt the decline in the stocks
A complete herring moratorium in 1972
Herring fishery partly resumed inn 1975
Vessel quota (IQ) system with limited eligibility
Vessel quotas were small, issued for a single season at a time
Transfers of quotas between vessels allowed in 1979
Various political decisions on entry and exit (eligibility) until the mid 80’s
The Fisheries Management Act of 1990 made the vessel quota system in the herring fishery part of the general ITQ system
Became important in the 1970’s
Vessel quotas in 1980, at a time when the stock was seriously threatened with overfishing.
The arguments were much the same as in the herring fishery previously
The industry asked for limited entry into the capelin fishery and vessel quotas
In 1986 capelin vessel quotas became transferable
The capelin vessel quota system became a part of the general ITQ system with the adoption of the Fisheries Management Act of 1990The Pelagic Fisheries
MRI recommends TAC for codfish
TAC proved difficult to uphold
Individual effort restrictions in 1977
Limited allowed fishing days for each vessel
New entry remained possible and the demersal fleet continued to grow
Allowable fishing days had to be reduced from year to year.
Deep-sea trawlers were allowed to fish for cod 323 days in 1977
In 1981 they were allowed 215 days
This system was economically wasteful
Sharp drop in the demersal stock and catch levels in 1983-84
The Fisheries Association of Iceland proposes IQs in the demersal fisheries for 1984
IQ system extended for 1985, 1986-1987, 1988-1990
Vessels allowed to opt for effort restrictions, to ensure sufficient support
In 1990 a comprehensive ITQ legislation, the Fisheries Management Act
This legislation abolished the effort quota option and closed certain other loopholes.
Extended the ITQ system indefinitelyDemersal Fisheries
The ITQ system was superimposed on an earlier management system
The system involving certain gear, area and fish size restrictions is still largely in place.
The ITQ system has not replaced these components of the earlier fisheries management system
The Fisheries Management Act of 1990 has been amended on several occasions (in 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, and 1998)
System made fairly uniform across the various fisheries by the Fisheries Management Act of 1990
Slight differences between the fisheries exist, mostly for historical reasons
The fisheries management system is based on individual transferable quotas (ITQs) and fishing licences
All fisheries are subject to vessel catch quotas: 15 species in Icelandic waters and 3 outside
The quotas represent shares in the TAC
They are permanent (indefinite), perfectly divisible and fairly freely transferable
They are issued subject to a small annual charge to cover enforcement costsThe current ITQ Fisheries Management System