Seafood export from Odisha reaches Rs 3000 crore

Bhubaneswar: The seafood export from Odisha has reached Rs 3000 crore in the 2018-19 financial year.

This was known from the Sea Food Exporters’ Association of India (Odisha Region) meeting addressed by chief secretary Asit Tripathy here.

The President of the association Dr Kamalesh Mishra said, “This has been possible because of the facilitating and promotional policies of the government during last years.”

Considering the proposals given by the association for the progress of brackishwater aquaculture in Odisha, the chief secretary directed the Fisheries and Animal Resource Department (F&ARD) to expedite power and road connectivity to all the identified clusters.

Tripathy said, “Since the sector has vast scope for employment generation and enhancing of economic activity at the ground level, the government is committed to provide infrastructural support to make the sector more competitive in the international market.”

F&ARD secretary R. Raghu Prasad mentioned, “107 number of brackish aquaculture clusters have been identified in various places of the state mostly along the continental shelf. Out of this, 19 clusters have been taken up for development in the first phase”.

Odisha Space Application Center through satellite imagery has identified around 3000 hectors of land suitable for brackish water aquaculture.

Chief Secretary Tripathy directed to prepare a timeline for power and road connectivity to all these clusters.

Director Fisheries N. Thirumala Nayak said, “Seafood export from Odisha finds its major market in Eastern Europe, Japan, China, Middle East, and southeastern Asian countries”.

The issues relating to creation of captive aquaculture farms for the exporters, value addition and product innovation in the sector, early release of subsidy to the farmers and exporters, development of road connectivity, land allotment in sea Food Park, the establishment of viral test and quality certification lab etc were discussed in the meeting.

The executive members of the association expressed their concern about shifting of DGFT office from Odisha to Kolkata. They emphatically mentioned that the office had been operating in Odisha for last three decades.

Its shifting to Kolkata would create more difficulties for Odisha exporters in the days to come, they said.