Project number: 2022-021
Project Status:
Budget expenditure: $136,420.00
Principal Investigator: Martin van Bueren
Organisation: Synergies Economic Consulting
Project start/end date: 9 Oct 2022 - 29 Jun 2023


WAFIC and DPIRD are seeking an improved understanding of the methods available for valuing fishery access rights, their relative advantages and disadvantages, and more specifically which methods would be most relevant and appropriate for Western Australia’s small-scale fisheries. This is to better ensure that future compensation schemes better meet their objectives while also building increased certainty and confidence for industry and the holders of access rights, which ultimately supports improved resource security.

Our proposed approach draws on relevant literature and consultation with both government and fishery stakeholders (including fishers, investors, and brokers) to understand the range of approaches applied to valuing commercial fishing rights and their relative advantages and disadvantages. We will then define some key evaluation criteria that define what an appropriate compensation method is and then assess identified methods against these criteria. This evaluation will also consider how the applicability of methods may vary for different fishery types and circumstances.

The end outcome will be identification of the most appropriate valuation methods for the development of future compensation schemes for different fishery types, with a particular focus on small-scale fisheries. This advice will be developed to be readily adopted and applied by in relevant legislation and/or policy instruments.


1. To review and summarise methods that can be used to value fishery access rights for compensation purposes, including each method’s advantages, disadvantages and appropriateness for given circumstances.
2. To understand the views and perspectives of those that hold or trade fishery access rights regarding how they value fishery rights.
3. To identify and recommend compensation calculation approaches that are most suitable for Western Australian small-scale fisheries and that could readily be adopted in Western Australian government legislation, policy or processes.

Related research


Valuing WA smaller commercial fisheries across the supply chain

1. To recommend a method to map and value the supply chain of small scale fisheries in WA and to estimate the economic contribution at each node of the supply chain, including options for addressing gaps in data availability.
BDO EconSearch