Comparative Study on the Economics of Large and Small Scale Marine Fishing Operations in Sri Lanka
H D WIMALASENA and K RUPAMOORTHY
The fishing units operating in the marine waters of Sri Lanka have been generally categorized into two types namely off-shore/deep sea fishing units and coastal fishing units. Large scale fishing operations comprise multi-day boats and small scale fishing operations comprise FRP boats traditional motorized as well as non-motorized crafts. Craft-wise and location-wise, earnings and expenditure were analyzed on the basis of crew share and owner's income. Average monthly net income of a multi-day boat owner was about Rs 24445.Whereas for FRP boats, motorized traditional crafts, non-motorized traditional crafts and theppam this was about Rs 9228, 5329, 1389 and 4413 respectively. Income of a crew member of a multi-day boat was about Rs 12750 per month. This was Rs 5494, 1478, 694 and 1471 of FRP boat, motorized traditional craft, non-motorized traditional crafts and theppam respectively. Generally crew income of small scale fishing crafts except FRP boats was below the level of national per capita income. Income of a crew member of non-motorized oru was below the poverty line. Analysis of boat length/engine horse power in relation to fuel consumption, margin per day and return to capital indicates that the most profitable combination was 38 feet/54 hp combination where, margin per day and return on capital were Rs 11100 and 48% respectively. A FRP boat annually earns Rs 14589.50 as resource rent (pure profit) from the fishery. All other crafts suffered a pure loss. Social conditions such as ownership of permanent house sanitary facilities were higher among multi-day boat owners than among small scale craft owners. Also small scale fishermen were used to take loans for consumption needs.