This publication is written in Swedish but has a summary in English.
The Swedish Maritime and Fisheries Programme is a funding scheme to support private applicants support private applicants in fisheries, inland waters, aquaculture and maritime sectors and is funded by the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund. The Swedish programme supports investments in aquaculture and fish processing with the purpose to stimulate investments that promote
competitiveness, employment and an environmentally sustainable development of the sectors. The programme also supports newly established aquaculture firms with start-up support to encourage new entrepreneurs in the sector.
The purpose of this evaluation is 1) to evaluate the extent to which the investment support to aquaculture and fish processing has increased firm competitiveness and growth in firms that received support during the period 2007–2019 and 2) to explore how total factor productivity, employment and value added has evolved in aquaculture firms receiving business start-up support during the period 2014–2019. The report also examines the development of aquaculture firms that received start-up support 2014–2019. This evaluation uses two measures of firm competitiveness and two measures of firm growth. Whereas firm competitiveness is measured by total factor productivity and value added productivity per employee, firm growth is measure by value added and employment. This report is part of the ex-post evaluation of the Swedish Maritime and Fisheries Programme 2014–2020.
The report concludes that investment support in the Swedish Maritime and Fisheries Programme 2014–2020 has a positive effect on the firm growth by increasing their value added and as such, may be a source of increase competitiveness in the long run. However, the results on firm competitiveness show no statistically significant effects, neither for aquaculture firms nor for fish processing
firms. Competitiveness is measured by total factor productivity and value added productivity per employee.
The report also shows that aquaculture firms that received start-up support have initiated their production as well as increased the number of employees after receiving support. However, the development has stagnated since 2016, and the value added and level of employment have been constant during 2016 and 2019. Important to note, though, is that the results are based on a limited number of observations and a short time period. Thus, drawing long term conclusions from the data is not possible. In order to draw conclusions on the extent to which firms receiving business start-up support have achieved sustainable growth, a longer follow-up period is needed.