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At Rs 37,870 cr, India records highest ever seafood export

India exported 11,34,948 tonnes of seafood worth an all time high of Rs 37,870 cr in 2016-17 as against Rs 30,728 cr a year earlier

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Riding on a robust demand for its frozen shrimp (prawn) and frozen fish in international markets, India exported 11,34,948 tonnes of seafood worth an all time high of US$ 5.78 billion (Rs 37, 870.90 crore) in 2016-17 as against 9,45,892 tonnes and US$ 4.69 billion a year earlier, with USA and South East Asia continuing to be the major importers while the demand from the European Union (EU) grew substantially during the period. The figures released by Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) today has claimed.

Frozen shrimp maintained its position as the top item of export, accounting for 38.28 per cent in quantity and 64.50 per cent of the total earnings in dollar terms. Shrimp exports increased by 16.21 per cent in terms of quantity and 20.33 per cent in dollar terms. Frozen Fish was the second largest export item, accounting for a share of 26.15 per cent in quantity and 11.64 per cent in dollar earnings, registering a growth of 26.92 per cent in terms of value.

USA imported 1,88,617 tonnes of Indian seafood, accounting for 29.98 per cent in terms of dollar. Export to that country registered a growth of 22.72 per cent, 33 per cent and 29.82 per cent in terms of quantity, value in rupee and US dollars, respectively. South East Asia remained the second largest destination of India’s marine products, with a share of 29.91 per cent in dollar terms, followed by the EU (17.98 per cent), Japan (6.83 per cent), the Middle East (4.78 per cent), China (3.50 per cent) and other countries (7.03 per cent). Overall, exports to South East Asia increased by 47.41 per cent in quantity, 52.84 per cent in rupee value and 49.90 per cent in dollar earnings.

“Increased production of L. Vannamei, diversification of aquaculture species, sustained measures to ensure quality, and increase in infrastructure facilities for production of value added products were largely responsible for India’s positive growth in exports of seafood,” said Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister for Commerce and Industry.

The overall export of shrimp during 2016-17 was pegged at 4, 34,484 tonnes worth US$ 3,726.36 million. USA was the largest import market for frozen shrimp (1,65,827 tonnes), followed by South East Asia (1,05,763 tonnes), the EU (77,178 tonnes), Japan (31,284 tonnes), Middle East (19,554 tonnes), China (7,818 tonnes) and other countries (27,063 tonnes).

The export of Vannamei shrimp, a major seafood delicacy, improved from 2,56,699 tonnes to 3,29,766 tonnes in 2016-17, registering a growth of 28.46 per cent in quantity. In value terms, 49.55 per cent of total Vannamei shrimp was exported to USA followed by 23.28 per cent to South East Asian countries, 13.17 per cent to the EU, 4.53 per cent to Japan, 3.02 per cent to the Middle East and 1.35 per cent to China.

Japan was the major market for Black Tiger shrimp with a share of 43.84 per cent in terms of value, followed by USA (23.44 per cent) and South East Asia (11.33 per cent). Frozen shrimp continued to be the principal export item to USA with a share of 94.77 per cent in dollar value while Vannamei shrimp to that country showed an increase of 25.60 per cent in quantity and 31.75 per cent in dollar terms.

Vietnam, with a share of 76.57 per cent in value (US dollar), was the major South East Asian market for Indian marine products, followed by Thailand (12.93 per cent), Taiwan (3.88 per cent), Malaysia (2.60 per cent), Singapore (2.21 per cent), South Korea (1.50 per cent) and other countries (0.30 per cent). Vietnam alone imported 3,18,171 tonnes of Indian seafood, the quantity being much more than that of any other individual markets like US, Japan or China.

The EU continued to be the third largest destination for Indian marine products with a share of 16.73 per cent in quantity. Frozen shrimp was the major item of exports, accounting for 40.66 per cent in quantity and 55.15 per cent in dollar earnings out of the total exports to the EU. Exports of Vannamei shrimp to the EU improved by 9.76 per cent in quantity and 11.40 per cent in dollar value.

Japan, the fourth largest destination for Indian seafood, accounted for 6.83 per cent in earnings and 6.08 per cent in quantity terms. Frozen shrimp continued to be the major item of exports to Japan with a share of 45.31 per cent in quantity and 77.29 per cent in value out of the total exports to that country.

Besides frozen shrimp and frozen fish, India’s other major seafood product was frozen squid, which recorded a growth of 21.50 per cent, 59.44 per cent and 57 per cent in terms of quantity, rupee value and dollar earnings, respectively. Export of frozen cuttlefish showed a decline in quantity terms, but increased in the rupee value and dollar terms by 18.85 per cent and 16.95 per cent, respectively.

Dried items registered a growth of 40.98 per cent, 20.14 per cent and 79.05 per cent in terms of quantity, rupee value and dollar terms, respectively. Indian ports handled a total marine cargo of 11,34,948 tonnes worth Rs 37,870.90 crore (US$ 5,777.61 million) in 2016-17 as compared to 9,45,892 tonnes worth Rs 30,420.83 crore (US$ 4,687.94 million) in 2015-16. Vizag, Kochi, Kolkata, Pipavav and Jawaharlal Nehru Port (JNP) were major ports that handled the marine cargo during 2016-17. Exports improved from Vizag, Kochi, Kolkata, Pipavav, JNP, Krishnapatanam and Tuticorin as compared to 2015-16.

Vizag port exported 1,59,973 tonnes of marine cargo worth Rs 9,294.31 crore (US$ 1,401.94 million) in 2016-17 as compared to 1,28,718 tonnes worth Rs 7,161 crore (US$ 1,105.76 dollars) in 2015-16.

Vizag port was followed by Kochi (1,55,989 tonnes, Rs 4,447.05 crore), Kolkata (1,04668 tonnes, Rs 4,451.67 crore), Pipavav (232,391 tonnes, Rs 4,217.45 crore), JNP (149,914 tonnes, Rs 4,084.96 crore), Krishnapatnam (62,049 tonnes, Rs 3,701.63 crore), Tuticorin (42,026 tonnes, Rs 2,220.52 crore), and Chennai (37,305 tonnes, 1,693.87 crore).

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