Sunday 23 January 2022
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Seafood export at all-time high

New Delhi: Riding on a robust demand for its frozen shrimp and frozen fish in international markets, India exported 11,34,948 metric tonne (MT) of seafood worth an all-time high of $5.78 billion (Rs 37, 870.90 crore) in 2016-17 as against 9,45,892 tonne and $4.69 billion a year earlier, with the US and south-east Asia continuing to be the major importers while the demand from the European Union (EU) grew substantially during the period.

Frozen shrimp maintained its position as the top item of export, accounting for 38.28% in quantity and 64.50% of the total earnings in terms. Shrimp exports increased by 16.21% in terms of quantity and 20.33% in dollar terms.

Frozen fish was the second largest export item, accounting for a share of 26.15% in quantity and 11.64% in earnings, registering a growth of 26.92% in terms of value.

The US imported 1,88,617 MT of Indian seafood, accounting for 29.98% in terms of the dollar. Export to that country registered a growth of 22.72%, 33% and 29.82% in terms of quantity, the 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% in terms, followed by the EU (17.98%), Japan (6.83%), the Middle East (4.78%), China (3.50%) and other countries (7.03%). Overall, exports to South-east Asia increased by 47.41% in quantity, 52.84% in rupee value and 49.90% in dollar earnings.

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

The overall export of shrimp during 2016-17 was pegged at 4,34,484 MT worth $3,726.36 million. The US was the largest market for frozen shrimp (1,65,827 MT), followed by the EU (77,178 MT), South-east Asia (1, 05,763 MT), Japan (31,284 MT), Middle East (19,554 MT), China (7818 MT) and other countries (27,063 MT).

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

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

Vietnam, with a share of 76.57% in value (US dollar), was the major South-east Asian market for Indian marine products, followed by Thailand (12.93%), Taiwan (3.88%), Malaysia (2.60%), Singapore (2.21%), South Korea (1.50%) and other countries (0.30%). Vietnam alone imported 3, 18,171 MT 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% in quantity. Frozen shrimp was the major item of exports, accounting for 40.66% in quantity and 55.15% in earnings out of the total exports to the EU. Exports of Vannamei shrimp to the EU improved by 9.76% in quantity and 11.40% in dollar value.

Japan, the fourth largest destination for Indian seafood, accounted for 6.83% in earnings and 6.08% in quantity terms. Frozen shrimp continued to be the major item of exports to Japan with a share of 45.31% in quantity and 77.29% 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%, 59.44% and 57% in terms of quantity, rupee value and earnings, respectively. Export of frozen cuttlefish showed a decline in quantity terms, but increased in the rupee value and dollar terms by 18.85% and 16.95%, respectively.

Dried items registered a growth of 40.98%, 20.14% & 79.05% in terms of quantity, rupee value and dollar terms, respectively. Indian ports handled a total marine cargo of 11,34,948 tonne worth Rs 37,870.90 crore (5,777.61 million dollars) in 2016-17 as compared to 9,45,892 tonne worth Rs 30,420.83 crore (4,687.94 million dollars) 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 exported 1,59,973 tonne of marine cargo worth Rs 9,294.31 crore (1,401.94 million US dollars) in 2016-17 as compared to 1,28,718 tonne worth Rs 7,161 crore (1,105.76 million dollars) in 2015-16.

Vizag was followed by Kochi (1,55,989 tonne, Rs 4,447.05 crore), Kolkata (1,04668 tonne, Rs 4,451.67 crore), Pipavav (2,32,391 tonne, Rs 4,217.45 crore), JNP (1,49,914 tonne, Rs 4,084.96 crore), Krishnapatnam (62,049 tonne, Rs 3,701.63 crore), Tuticorin (42,026 tonne, Rs 2,220.52 crore), and Chennai (37,305 tonne, 1,693.87 crore).

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