The seafood export, widely regarded as the most lucrative in the fisheries sector, reported 30 per cent growth in 2021-22 fiscal in comparison to export of the preceding financial year with monetary return from the export shooting up to Rs 4,526.23 crore. Ranendra Pratap Swain, the fisheries and animal resource development minister, quoting Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA)’s data, informed this in the state Assembly on Wednesday.
The seafood export climbed to 86,481 metric tonne worth Rs 4526.23 crore in 2021-22 fiscal while it stood at 60,718 metric ton worth Rs 3107.68 crore in 2020-21, Minister Swain said in a written reply to a query by BJD MLA Ramesh Chandra Behera.
The state has planned to enhance the export value in coming years. A new scheme – Promotion of Aquaculture and Shrimp Export Cell with an outlay of Rs 24.00 crore – has been provisioned for 2023-24 fiscal to promote processing units for value addition of fish within the state, officials of fisheries and animal resource development department said.
This initiative will further increase the export competency of our marine fish exporters. Odisha is a naturally grown antibiotic seafood zone with abundance of naturally grown seafood. The aquaculture farmers of the state refrain from putting to use antibiotic chemicals for seafood produce. Therefore qualitatively Odisha’s seafood is good enough to cater to international standards, they informed.
Rs 22.50 crore has been provisioned during the 2023-24 year as livelihood assistance to around 15,000 marine fishermen families has been increased to Rs. 15,000/- per family from Rs.7, 500/- whose livelihoods are affected due to imposition of the fishing ban for Olive ridley sea turtle conservation, the officials informed. Rs 220 crore has been provisioned during the year Financial Year :2023-24 for infrastructure development in the Fisheries sector, development of Government Fish Farm, development of Brackish water cluster, construction of new Fish Landing Centre and office building of Assistant Fisheries Officer.
It has been proposed for dredging of Devi River mouth at Astaranga and Mahanadi River mouth at Paradip with provision of Rs 20 crore to make them navigable round the year for the benefit of the fishers against nil budget during last year. For creating public awareness and digitisation of the sector, outlay of Rs 20 crore has been provisioned during the year 2023-24 fiscal, which is four times more than the previous year.
For enhancing fish production in reservoirs and enhancement of livelihoods of primary Fishermen Co-op Society members, an outlay of Rs 6.60 crore has been provisioned for stocking four crore fingerlings in 130 reservoirs during the year Financial Year :2023-24. An outlay of Rs 180 crore has been proposed under the Central sponsored Scheme for integrated development and management of fisheries sector, they concluded.