ECONOMIC ASSESSMENT OF THE ARTISANAL FISHERY IN THE CIÉNAGA GRANDE DE SANTA MARTA AND PAJARALES COMPLEX, COLOMBIAN CARIBBEAN
Financial indicators (investment and operational costs, income and profits and net current value, cost-benefit) were used between 1994 and 2003, in order to evaluate the economic profitability of the most representative fishing economic units (FEU) from the coastal and stilt villages in the Ciénaga Grande de Santa Marta and Pajarales complex (CGSM-CP). It has been stated that most of the FEUs are not financially profitable for these fishers, since they generate very low incomes, which in most cases are not enough to match the current minimum legal salary. In spite of that, fishermen from the coastal villages showed higher economic profitability than those from stilt villages. It has also been observed that the fishermen economic yields suffer variations in a very short term, which is attributed to natural and anthropogenic changes of the CGSM that are affecting the structure and composition of fish population. This is driving the fishery towards being nonviable in the long term, with the implications it has on fishermen behavior: i) higher pressure on fish resources, ii) increase of economic debt, and iii) incapability saving money. In this context, it is recommended to develop the bases for fishery management in the CGSM, without overlooking the social and cultural characteristics of human population, as well as its active participation in the fishery management.
Cienaga Grande de Santa Marta; Artisanal fisheries; Fishery economy
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