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Day 81 – Q 2. Why is commercial fishing is more developed in Northern Europe and North America as compared to Asia? Why is Japan an exception in Asia? Explain.

2. Why is commercial fishing is more developed in Northern Europe and North America as compared to Asia? Why is Japan an exception in Asia? Explain.

 एशिया की तुलना में उत्तरी यूरोप और उत्तरी अमेरिका में वाणिज्यिक मछली पकड़ने का विकास अधिक क्यों है? जापान एशिया में अपवाद क्यों है? समझाएं।


Commercial fishing is the activity of catching fish and other seafood for commercial profit, mostly from wild fisheries. It provides a large quantity of food to many countries around the earth, but those who practice it as an industry must often pursue fish far into the ocean under adverse conditions.


  • Climate – In tropical climate fish perishes soon. Cooler climate in North Europe and North America helps in longer storage and transportation. 
  • Coastline – Asia has relatively smooth coast line and hence less natural harbors than North Europe and North America. This puts Asia in natural disadvantage for fish catch. 
  • Continental shelves – of Asia are narrower than Europe and North America.
  • Capital – Commercial fishing requires large ships as multiple varieties of fishes caught are separated and processed for packing on the ship itself. High end technologies like GPS, underwater camera etc are needed for high fish catch. This requires massive capital investment which are easily available in Northern Europe and America but not much in Asia.
  • Species variety – in the tropical regions of Asia, multiple variety of fishes occur, but in smaller groups. This is not good for large scale commercial exploitation.
  • Health issue  – Tropical fishes have higher oil content. This is less desirable for eating.

Why is Japan an exception in Asia?

Favorable Geography

  • Sea of Japan has shallow water and high plankton growth.
  • North-West pacific continental shelf=more planktons
  • Meeting of warm Kuroshio and cold Oyashio currents near coast of Japan helps is high planktons growth. 
  • More than 3000 island around coastline of Japan

  • Lack of agricultural prospect – Japan being a mountainous country has less area for cultivation. People have shifted more towards fishing. 
  • Human expertise – Already good experience for whale fishing. Japanese also have invented method to cultivate pearls artificially. 
  • Main source of protein – In absence of livestock farming, fishing industry is the main source protein for Japanese population. This has also given thrust to the fishing industry.
  • Development of ancillary industries
  • Steel industry, marine engineering has been developed in coastal areas using imported coal and iron ore. 
  • Provides material for sophisticated fishing vessels with processing and refrigeration facilities onboard.

  • Development of export market – to nearby Asian countries. 


Apart from geographical factors, socio-cultural and economic factors decide the development of fishing industry all over the world. 

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