Towards fishery sustainability in the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation: a critical analysis of effectiveness of international legal regimes

Chen, I-Ju (2020). Towards fishery sustainability in the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation: a critical analysis of effectiveness of international legal regimes. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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This thesis identifies the provision of subsidies as being the principal contributor to the depletion of fish, which is undoubtedly the most significant issue amidst all of APEC's pressing fisheries issues. APEC is one of the intergovernmental organisations significantly discussing the regulation of fisheries in the context of trade liberalisation of fish and fishery products. This thesis examines how various regimes in international law and APEC curtail the depletion, and further evaluates the effects international law has on the fisheries issues in the APEC. The first focused area in this thesis is the effect that international environmental law and international law of the sea have on fishery sustainability. These regimes have limited effect on fishery sustainability because of their voluntary nature. These legal regimes have more effect on fishery management rather than controlling fisheries subsidies. The second area of focus is on the WTO-launched negotiations on the regulation of fisheries subsidies. The WTO originally published the Chair Text in 2007 so to clarify and improve the discipline of fisheries subsidies; in 2017 it vowed to complete an agreement of the regulation before the next WTO Ministerial Conference held in late 2019. However, there is no enforced regulation of fisheries subsidies by the WTO. The final focus is that APEC has made policy declarations to remove harmful fisheries subsidies; however, its governance has been criticised because of the voluntary nature of its forum. Nevertheless, the major undertaking of recent times has been the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (CPTPP) by eleven APEC member economies. Moreover, the environmental chapter in the CPTPP is the first regulatory standard of fisheries subsidies in the APEC region. Its regulation of fishery subsidies integrates fisheries rules and the WTO Subsidy and Countervailing Measures Agreement. Particularly, CPTPP eliminates harmful fisheries subsidies that lead to the depletion of fish. In conclusion, this thesis argues that, compared to international environmental law on fisheries and international law of the sea, the international trade regime contributes a more significant impact on resolving fisheries issues in APEC. This is because of the long-standing, in-depth and up-to-date negotiations on the regulation of fisheries subsidies at the WTO. Furthermore, the CPTPP paves the way for fishery sustainability because of its binding effects of the regulation of fisheries subsidies and its environmental dispute settlement.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: Birmingham Law School
Funders: Other
Other Funders: Taiwanese Government, College of Arts and Law, University of Birmingham
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)


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