News ID: 272761
Published: 1255 GMT August 11, 2020

Iran eyes 15% increase in annual fishery output

Iran eyes 15% increase in annual fishery output

Iran is expecting a moderate 15 percent increase in fishery production in the current calendar year (which started on March 20), as the country keeps expanding its aquaculture sector to alleviate concerns about reaching biological limits in marine fishing.

The head of Iran Fisheries Organization said that annual output of various fishery products in the country is expected to reach 1.5 million tons by late March 2021, Press TV reported.

Last year, Iran produced 13,000 tons of fishery products, according to IRNA.

Nabiollah Khunmirzaei said Iranian aquaculture sector is expected to further expand this year as the government imposes additional bans on marine fishing while introducing incentives to encourage fish farming across the country.

“This year, aquaculture in the country will outdo marine fishing for the first time and this trend will continue in the coming years due to investments in [domestic] aquaculture sector,” he noted, adding Iran’s annual aquaculture production is to reach a total of 800,000 tons by late March 2021.

Over the past years, Iran, a country with 12,000 square kilometers of water surface, has seen a surge in fishery production and exports.

Official figures show that Iran’s aquaculture output more than doubled in three years to reach nearly 650,000 tons in the year to March 2019.

In the same year, a total of 650,000 tons of aquatic animals were caught in the countries northern and southern waters, noted the organization’s head.

Domestic demand for seafood keeps increasing, said Khunmirzaei, adding Iranians are consuming an average of 15 kilograms of seafood products each year, up from 12 kilograms in 2018.

Iran also views increased exports of aquaculture products as a stable source of income at the time the country’s access to foreign currency revenues remains tight because of American sanctions targeting its overseas sales of oil.

Among the Iranian aquatic animals that are becoming increasingly popular in foreign markets are rainbow trout, caviar and various species of shrimp.

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