Myanmar fisheries exports down, prawn farming under strain

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Workers sort fish at Nyaung Tan Jetty in Yangon. Photo: GNLM/Phoe Khwar

MYANMAR’s weekly fisheries exports to China declined by 200 tonnes 17-23 June compared to the previous week.
A total of 686 tonnes of fisheries products, estimated to be worth US$1 million, were exported to China from 17 to 23 June via Muse’s 105th mile trade zone, according to a Myanmar Commerce Ministry report issued yesterday.
Fisheries exports from 1 April to 23 June this fiscal year earned more than $118 million which showed a slight increase of $6 million against same period of last fiscal year.
Last financial year the fisheries sector earned nearly $600 million, according to statistics released by the Commerce Ministry.
Erratic weather in the past years adversely affected fisheries production. Ocean fishing also appears to be experiencing a lull.
Myanmar’s fish and prawn industries have been striving to adopt new cultivation techniques to prevent disease, increase growth rates and clean the farming lakes.
Both saltwater and freshwater prawn farmers are facing difficulties. Of 27 freshwater hatcheries, only four remain active due the challenge of setting appropriate conditions for breeding.
Currently Myanmar’s prawn industry is under serious strain, with only 40,000 tonnes of being produced each year and the local market now relying on Thai imports.—Ko Htet

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