Fisher overcapacity has resulted in major overexploitation of Philippine reef fisheries. Demersal fish stocks are biologically and economically overfished in almost all areas other than Eastern Luzon, Palawan, and the Southern Sulu Sea (BFAR, n.d.).
Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUUF) is an aggravating factor, posing impediments to all attempts to manage fisheries resources and fish stocks in the country. The growing demand for fisheries resources, the increase in the numbers of fishers and vessels, and the improving efficiency of fishing gear drive the collection of these resources way beyond their capacity to recover. Moreover, the decline in the availability of fisheries resources increases competition and, thus, prods players to resort to illegal, and often, more efficient forms of fishing.