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Como Lake to Produce Fish for Export Next Year

MALAYSIA - Como Lake on the fringe of Kenyir is expected to produce 9,000 tonnes of silver catfish, Asian seabass and tilapia for the international market in 2010.

The world will be able to savour succulent freshwater fish reared at an aquaculture farm in Kenyir Lake, Terengganu, by next year, reports The Star of Malaysia.

The farm at Como Lake in the fringe of Kenyir is poised to produce 9,000 tonnes of patin (silver catfish), siakap (Asian seabass) and tilapia for the international market.

It is among the high impact projects launched by former prime minister, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, in 2007 under the Terengganu Agrotech Development Corporation (TADC).

TADC chief operations officer, Rosli Harun, said there were parties from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iran, UAE, India, Singapore and Hong Kong interested in buying the fish when production reached full capacity in the next few months.

"We have doubled the production by adding 2,000 underwater cages. Each cage can generate one tonne of fish every harvest," he said.

Harvesting was only twice a year as the fish took six to eight months to mature, depending on the species, he told The Star.

"For each harvest, we can turn in a profit of MYR 10 million based on the current tilapia and patin price of five ringgit (MYR) per kilo, and MYR 12 per kg for siakap," he said.

Mr Rosli estimated that revenue of MYR 20 million per annum was possible with the inclusion of the export market. He said that buyers from UAE were keen to order three containers, equivalent to 60 tonnes, on a weekly basis. He added that TADC was working out ways to boost production in view of the high overseas demand.

The farm released four million fry into the cages early this year to increase output, he said.

Tilapia was the favourite among foreigners, followed by siakap, Mr Rosli added.

For the local market, he said the Como Lake farm would supply 10 tonnes to the Selayang wholesale market in Selangor from early next year. The project also helped villagers earn supplementary incomes, said Mr Rosli.

the Fish Site Editor

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