By Mahnaz Abdi

Iran's fishery industry on wave of progress

February 13, 2023 - 16:23

TEHRAN- Iran's aquaculture industry is on the wave of progress and has world ranks in the production of some fishery products.

It is worth mentioning that the growth and development of Iran’s aquaculture industry has reached the point where the country has become a model for the countries of the region and the world.

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) believes that Iran plays a responsible and central role in fishing and aquaculture in the region, and for this reason, it can be considered a model for the countries of the region.

Now the world markets have become the target of the export of the country's fishery products, so that Head of Iran Fisheries Organization (IFO) Hossein Hosseini has announced that the value of fishery exports was more than $500 million in the past Iranian calendar year 1400 (ended on March 20, 2022), and the export has grown by 67 percent this year as well.

In addition to the executive role of the IFO, the role of research and knowledge-based activities in this field is very important, and the entry of young specialists and knowledge-based experts in various sectors of the fishery industry has made the sanctions ineffective.

“In the past, our [fish farming] cages were all imported. Now, with knowledge-based companies, 85 percent of cage equipment is produced inside the country and we are self-sufficient in preparing 98 percent of shrimp food”, the IFO head has stated.

“Meanwhile, we have been able to achieve global rankings for the country in the production of some fishery products, and we rank second in total fishery output in West Asia”, the official further highlighted.

Last November, Iran launched the country’s first fishery industries park.

“The country's first fishery park was put into operation in which every year 1,000 tons of shrimp will be produced”, Agriculture Minister Javad Sadati-Nejad said at the time.

According to the official, the volume of shrimp production in this park will increase to 2,000 tons by the end of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20).

Sadati-Nejad stressed his ministry’s support for the companies active in the fishery sector, saying: “The Ministry of Agriculture and Iran Fisheries Organization support investors active in the field of fisheries and seafood production, which in addition to improving the economy, increasing exports and foreign revenues, it also brings job creation.”

The minister also announced the growth of the export of aquatic and fishery products, including caviar, in the current year.

Also last May, the IFO head said the country is aiming to increase the exports of fishery products to one billion dollars by the Iranian calendar year 1404 (begins on March 21, 2025).

Hosseini said the country's fishery production in the previous Iranian calendar year stood at 1,268,000 tons, and according to the IFO’s new reform plan, fishery production is set to increase to 2,600,000 tons by the year 1404.

According to the official, Iran exported 160,000 tons of fishery products worth $556 million last year.

Following the IFO’s reform plan, the organization is implementing a program to provide the country’s fishery sector with low-interest bank loans since subsidized feed is no longer provided for them.

Over the past three years, the efforts of the Aquatics Production and Trade Union of Iran, and the non-governmental sector have led to the addition of markets in countries such as Oman and Malaysia to Iran's target export markets in the field of fishery.

Enjoying high quality, Iran’s fishery products were sold easily in the export markets, and also some new export destinations welcomed these products in the past three years; as new markets including China, South Korea, and the Eurasian Union nations opened up for Iranian fishery products.

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