International Fisheries Access Agreements and Trade

Tatyana Chesnokova, Stephanie McWhinnie*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


International fishery access agreements allow fishermen from one country to harvest fish in another country’s waters. We empirically examine why countries sign fisheries access agreements with each other and compare these to the characteristics of countries that choose to undertake international trade. Using a unique global panel dataset, we show that access agreements and fish exports are driven by two key motives: a pattern of comparative advantage in fishing, which depends on fish stocks and fishing capacities; and gravity factors of economic size and distance. Our results suggest that most gravity factors work similarly for the dual pathways of agreements and exports: larger countries that are closer to each other are more likely to sign access agreements or to trade. However, the pattern of advantage is determined differently: source countries with larger fishing capacity are more likely to export fish, while source countries with lower fishing capacity are more likely to sign agreements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1207-1238
Number of pages32
JournalEnvironmental and Resource Economics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Nov 1
Externally publishedYes


  • Access agreements
  • Fishing services
  • International fisheries
  • International trade

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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