China’s Financing and Subsidization of Capture Fisheries

Date of Publication

2021 12:00 AM

Keywords

illegal fishing, sustainability, fisheries management

Description

China’s subsidies financing structure and reporting has changed considerably in the past few years, resulting in decreased transparency. China used to issue a detailed report of its fisheries subsidies programs and amounts in the annual China Fisheries Yearbook volume,however in 2016, this detailed reporting ceased. China used to report the total amount of fuel subsidies provided to the industry, including the proportions provided to the domestic versus distant-water fishing fleets, but China stopped reporting the fuel subsidies given to the DWF industry after 2011. Now, instead of reporting funding that directly supports fuel subsidies, the Chinese central government has altered its subsidy programs so that fishing enterprises receive general funding that they can use to support their operations, which includes fuel subsidies. The Chinese central government no longer tracks criteria that determine how much money in fuel subsidies a given vessel is granted—these allocations are now made at subnational levels of government (provincial-level and below). China issued a notification of its subsidies, including agricultural subsidies, to the WTO in 2019, detailing fisheries subsidies programs for 2017 and 2018, but did not include an estimate for fuel subsidies because of these policy changes. This study relied mostly on primary-source Chinese language materials, including government publications, media reports, and interviews. We examined government laws, regulations, policies, notifications, and analyses and comprehensively cited those that are instrumental to China’s fisheries subsidies program. We also drew upon peer-reviewed academic literature and journalistic accounts to complement our analysis. In cases where we had incomplete data, such as incomplete reporting for provincial subsidies, we estimated amounts to account for these information gaps. A more comprehensive analysis of these findings will be submitted for publication in the peer-reviewed literature by the close of 2021.

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Jan 1st, 12:00 AM

China’s Financing and Subsidization of Capture Fisheries

China’s subsidies financing structure and reporting has changed considerably in the past few years, resulting in decreased transparency. China used to issue a detailed report of its fisheries subsidies programs and amounts in the annual China Fisheries Yearbook volume,however in 2016, this detailed reporting ceased. China used to report the total amount of fuel subsidies provided to the industry, including the proportions provided to the domestic versus distant-water fishing fleets, but China stopped reporting the fuel subsidies given to the DWF industry after 2011. Now, instead of reporting funding that directly supports fuel subsidies, the Chinese central government has altered its subsidy programs so that fishing enterprises receive general funding that they can use to support their operations, which includes fuel subsidies. The Chinese central government no longer tracks criteria that determine how much money in fuel subsidies a given vessel is granted—these allocations are now made at subnational levels of government (provincial-level and below). China issued a notification of its subsidies, including agricultural subsidies, to the WTO in 2019, detailing fisheries subsidies programs for 2017 and 2018, but did not include an estimate for fuel subsidies because of these policy changes. This study relied mostly on primary-source Chinese language materials, including government publications, media reports, and interviews. We examined government laws, regulations, policies, notifications, and analyses and comprehensively cited those that are instrumental to China’s fisheries subsidies program. We also drew upon peer-reviewed academic literature and journalistic accounts to complement our analysis. In cases where we had incomplete data, such as incomplete reporting for provincial subsidies, we estimated amounts to account for these information gaps. A more comprehensive analysis of these findings will be submitted for publication in the peer-reviewed literature by the close of 2021.