ITQ (Individual Transferable Quota) is one of the controls employed by some governments in managing fishing. An example is New Zealand, where it has been in use since 1986.


It is one of the more controversial forms of fishery management mechanism. Some see the conversion of a fishery ITQ as giving public property to a few individuals, whilst others see it as the most natural way within a modern economy of efficiently managing a limited natural resource and cultivating a sense of stewardship through ownership. Recent research (Christopher Costello) suggest, that ITQ systems benefit a more sustainable use of the marine resources. First and foremost ITQ result in a viable balance between fishing capacity and fishing possibilities.

Small scale and coastal fisheries Edit

Only little consideration has been given to the use of ITQ to sustain small scale and coastal fisheries. Recent results in the Danish ITQ fishery showed that a "coastal preference" could be effectively introduced without compromising economic efficiency in the fishing fleet.