Sustainable fisheries management in the resource periphery: The cases of Chile and New Zealand



Abstract:  Chile and New Zealand both depend on their natural resource bases for their exports. This situation characterises the historical condition of the resource periphery. Despite similar processes of globalisation in their fisheries sectors since the 1970s, the ways in which public and private policies and management strategies have been brought to bear on sustaining the resource base differ considerably. In light of the strategic economic agreement between the two countries (and Singapore and Brunei) signed in 2005, these contrasts reveal that multiple options exist for countries in the resource periphery to enhance their national development by working with comparative advantages alongside competitive advantages introduced into the sector. Chile’s explosive growth in aquaculture and its low levels of public and private concern for more sustainable fisheries is contrasted with New Zealand’s more sustainable approach to natural resource management through a range of instruments and commitments. The principal conclusion is that resource periphery producers should capitalise on their natural assets, but only within the context of a sustainable strategy that promotes and enforces responsibility. The current crisis in global capture fisheries is both an opportunity and a warning in this regard.