To improve the prototype bioeconomic model for Philippine fisheries, the Department of Agriculture-National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (DA-NFRDI) — together with other government and non-government agencies engaged in fisheries economics, data collection, analysis, estimation, and policy and decision-making — participated in the “Philippine Fishery Bioeconomic Modelling Workshop” organized by the World Bank on March 20, 21 and 24, 2023 in Quezon City.

The workshop aimed to introduce fisheries economics and bioeconomic modelling including, the “Sunken Billions” methodology and the available prototype bioeconomic model for Philippine marine fisheries. The “Sunken Billions” approach refers to the economic losses caused by unsustainable fishing practices and their negative impact on marine ecosystems and fisheries.

Agnes Balota, World Bank senior environmental specialist, and Ragnar Arnason, world-renowned fishery economics expert, and professor emeritus at the University of Iceland facilitated the workshop.

On March 22, Prof. Arnason visited NFRDI to discuss the status of the Philippine capture fisheries. He was also keen to have a collaborative partnership with the Institute to further develop the bioeconomic model for the Philippines.

NFRDI Executive Director Dr. Lilian Garcia affirmed its commitment to taking important steps as one of the ways forward of the workshop. The Institute is committed to providing not only technologies but also science-based information and discoveries that would serve as bases in the crafting of appropriate management measures toward fishery resource sustainability.

The NFRDI and the DA-Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) are the main counterparts for the bioeconomic modelling workshop together with the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), DA-Bureau of Agricultural Research, and USAID Fish Right. 

Aside from improving the prototype bioeconomic model for Philippine marine fisheries participants will also plan the most useful next steps under the Fisheries and Coastal Resiliency (FISHCORE) project. The World Bank, with funding from the PROBLUE multi-donor Trust Fund, supports the knowledge improvement of the country‘s fisheries sector to inform the design of FISHCORE project. 

Attending from NFRDI were Francisco SB. Torres, Jr., Renalyne P. Acosta, Nicko Amor L. Flores, and Noimie Rose B. Dicdiquin of Capture Fisheries Research and Development Division; Christian B. Cuevas of Freshwater Fisheries Research and Development Center; and Mirriam F. Cayme and Tyronne James J. Buico of Planning, Policy, and Information Division. ### (Tyrone James Buico)