Saturday, August 4, 2012

How much does the Lovina dolphin watching industry worth?

Okay, first of all, I'm not an economist. Heck, I even made a big elementary mistake that will guarantee a life time ridicule at my naivette (or stupidity?), particularly from a particular economist-turned-life-partner of mine. But still, I could not revisit the past and recollect the data, can I? All I can do is humbly accept the mistake and commit myself of not repeating it again. Which I solemnly swear.

Nonetheless, the Universe worked Its magic, and here's my first PhD paper on the economics of Lovina.

Mustika, P. L. K., Birtles, A., Welters, R. & Marsh, H. 2012, 'The economic influence of community-based dolphin watching on a local economy in a developing country: Implications for conservation', Ecological Economics, vol. 79, no. 0, pp. 11-20.

This study examined the direct economic impacts of dolphin watching tourism in Lovina, north Bali (Indonesia). The study applied the direct expenditure approach to tourists who went on dolphin tours in Lovina in 2008 and 2009. This industry depends on predictable access to coastal dolphins, attracts at least 37,000 overnight visitors per annum (~ 60% of the region's overnight tourists) and contributes at least 46% of the total direct expenditures (USD 4.1 million p.a.) for accommodation, meals, transportation, communication and souvenirs. The 179 boatmen enjoy an above average income and thus have little financial incentive to leave the industry. Nonetheless, trip fees constitute only 3% of the total expenditures generated by dolphin watching tourism. The remainder e.g., for accommodation, restaurants and transport is spent with local businesses which become the substantial beneficiaries and hence these stakeholders should also be consulted prior to any management intervention. This profitable industry supports 35–100 tour boats operating daily. The number of boats should be regulated to address concerns over their impacts on the dolphins and visitor satisfaction.

Pic: dolphin dollar!

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