A study of the trawler fleet investment decision within the demersal fishing sector

Flanagan, B. L. (1984-12)

Thesis (MBA)--Stellenbosch University, 1984.


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: The chief sector of the South African fishing industry, demersal trawling is in a state of uncertainty that brings its competitiveness and long term developnent into question. The Hake (Merluccius capensis and Merluccius paradoxus) resource, which accounts for 70% of the landed catch, has finally started on the expected road to recovery and it is anticipated that this will proceed shortly for a nunber of years. During 1983 comfort was derived from the resulting rise in catch per unit effort rates and a significant improvement in the average size of fish landed. This, together with lower fuel prices and increased operating efficiences, enable the industry to operate at lower expenditure. Unfortunately, a second successive reflection of the T.A.C. (Total Allowable Catch ) of 12% in 1983 meant that gains in productivity were not fully reflected in reduced landed costs. This year (1984) the T. A. C. was increased by 4,8% which only marginally improves the already poor situation. More serious difficulties can be traced to adverse market developments. The price of fish has fallen in real terms (see Table 1.1 below) over a number of years. However, in 1983, the industry experienced a startling fall in prices, the severity of which may be gauged from the fact that actual prices realised were roughly equal to those of 1981. (Bross, 8 May, 1984) This pattern is continuing through 1984 - as is seen in Table 1 .1, an extract from Irvin & Johnson financial results .

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